Palestinian government resigns as Abbas seeks to pressure Hamas

Palestinian prime minister Rami Hamdallah speaks during a visit to the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar in the occupied West Bank on July 14, 2018. (AFP pic)

RAMALLAH: The government of Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah submitted its resignation on Tuesday, just days after Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he wanted to replace it.

The move is the latest in Abbas’s efforts to squeeze Hamas, the militant group that rules the Gaza Strip. He said he wanted to form a government representing various factions in the Palestine Liberation Organization; Hamas is not part of the PLO.

The outgoing government was formed in 2014 in an effort to reconcile the rival governments in the West Bank and Gaza. While it includes representatives agreed on by both parties, reconciliation efforts stalled and the government never extended its authority over Gaza.