GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Fatah party of Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is staging its first rally in the Islamist Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip since 2007, reflecting warming ties between the two rival factions.
Tens of thousands marched Friday carrying Fatah banners, and top party officials arrived in Gaza for the first time since they were ousted from Gaza by Hamas rivals in 2007. A recorded speech by Abbas, who rules in the West Bank, will be screened.
Fatah is marking the anniversary of its founding.
Hamas was recently allowed to hold its first West Bank rallies. The thaw in relations followed eight days of fighting between Israel and Gaza in November.