First Published: 2013-04-06

 

Abbas warns Fayyad: Bring back Nabil Qassis or face dismissal

 

Palestinian president may fire Prime Minister as party criticises premier's government as being ‘improvised and confused.’

 

Middle East Online

Cause of disagreement: Resignation of Finance Minister

RAMALLAH (Palestinian Territories) - Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas may fire Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, a Fatah member said, as the party criticised the premier's government as being "improvised and confused."

Abbas "is leaning towards dismissing Fayyad from the head of the government and forming a new one," a member of Fatah's Revolutionary Council said late on Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity.

"I am angrier than all of you at the government... but I don't want to say more than that now. Just wait for three days," he quoted Abbas as saying at a meeting of the council in Ramallah.

He said the key factor was disagreement over the resignation of the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority's Finance Minister, which Abbas refused to accept but which Fayyad, a US-educated economist, agreed to.

Nabil Qassis, a former president of the Bir Zeit University near Ramallah who joined the government in May 2012, announced on March 2 that he was resigning, without giving a reason. Abbas was abroad at the time.

"Abbas informed Fayyad that if Nabil Qassis did not return to the finance ministry... Abbas would dismiss his government and form a new one," the official said.

The Revolutionary Council -- one of the secular Fatah's governing bodies -- also officially criticised Fayyad's government for the first time on Friday.

"The policies of the current Palestinian government are improvised and confused in many issues of finance and the economy," it said in a statement.

Fayyad, 61, a political independent and former International Monetary Fund and World Bank official, was first appointed Palestinian Prime Minister amid the deadly takeover by the Islamist Hamas of the Gaza Strip in June 2007.

Hamas has never recognised his authority, continuing instead to recognise its own Prime Minister, Ismail Haniya.

Rumours have been rife in Ramallah that Fayyad is on the way out because of differences with the Fatah leadership.

The Palestinian Authority is facing chronic budget difficulties labelled by ministers as "the worst financial crisis" since its creation in 1994.

The Palestinian fiscal crisis is aggravated by non-payment of aid pledged by global donors, mainly the United States and Arab nations, and tensions with Israel.

Fayyad spent three days in hospital this week being treated for pancreatic inflammation. He was discharged late on Wednesday after undergoing treatment and returned home to rest, a medic close to the premier said.

 

Iraq launches operation to drive ‘Islamic State’ from Anbar

Libya militias trap civilians in Benghazi

Pro-government fighters retake Yemen city from Shiite rebels

Fukushima nuclear plant wins Qatar contract

Morocco's majestic cedars threatened by climate change

EU border agency plans to expand migrant rescue operation

Syria state TV blames ‘foreign enemies’ for signal jamming

Palestinians and jihadists clash in Yarmouk

Iraq refugees forced back into conflict zones

Kuwait restores Islamist lawmaker's citizenship

Washington Post reporter goes on trial behind closed doors in Iran

New airport in restive eastern Turkey

Iran ‘thwarts’ US cyber attack on Oil Ministry’

Egypt opens border crossing with Gaza for 48 hours

Litany of problems keep Iraqi army weak and ineffective

Rouhani: most Iranians favour peace

Iran Foreign Minister discusses Yemen conflict in neutral Oman

Palestinians dismiss Netanyahu initiative

Three Moroccans jailed for homosexuality

Oxfam: 16 million Yemenis have no access to clean water

US, Iraq at loggerheads over Ramadi

Soldier kills comrades in Tunisia barracks shooting

Netanyahu names rightist ally as new Foreign Ministry chief

Iraq rejects US criticism of security forces over defeat in Ramadi

Hezbollah captures hilltops from Qaeda wing in Syria

Saudi Shiites hold mass funeral for victims of mosque bombing

Sudan targets newspapers in major media crackdown

Iran looks forward to total lifting of sanctions

Syria regime launches air raids around Palmyra

Hezbollah urges broad support for ‘existential battle’ in Syria

Fierce fighting rocks Yemen as peace hopes fade out

Olmert sentenced to eight months for corruption

Nobel Prize-winning John Nash killed in car crash

Blow to Yemen peace efforts as UN conference postponed

US accuses Iraq forces lacking will to fight IS

Weakened by war, Syria regime appears ready for ‘de facto partition’

Iran army ‘needs bigger budget to counter IS’

Saudi Shiites refuse to be provoked by deadly mosque bombing

Iran denies agreement on inspection of military sites

Emirati aid shipment arrives in Yemen port city of Aden

GCC denies air campaign against IS terrorists has failed

Tripoli leaders use migrant issue as they yearn for recognition

‘Islamic State’ takes full control of Iraq-Syria border crossing

Saudi king vows to punish those behind bombing at Shiite mosque

Sudan's Islamists protest against el-Sisi