Abbas calls Hamas leader for first time in months
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas' exiled leader Khaled Mashaal spoke to each other for the first time in months Thursday in what sources said was a sign that they are close to forming a unity government.
Abbas cut off contact with Mashaal last spring after the Hamas leader criticized Abbas in a speech.
According to the AP, Abbas called Mashaal, who is in Damascus, at the urging of advisers who realized that progress couldn't be made without dealing with the Hamas leader, officials said. "The phone call reflects the positive spirit prevailing in Gaza in an attempt to reach formation of a new unity government," said Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a top presidential aide. "We hope to be able to realize progress very fast."