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Palestinian PM resigns

June 20, 2013

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah has submitted his resignation, his office has confirmed. This came just two weeks after the highly respected academic had taken office.

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah speaks during a joint news conference with European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton (not pictured) in the West Bank city of Ramallah June 19, 2013. REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman
Image: Reuters

The prime minister's office said on Thursday Hamdallah had stepped down because of a "conflict over authority." It was not immediately clear whether President Mahmoud Abbas would accept his resignation.

Hamdallah took over for Salam Fayyad, a US-educated economist, who resigned on April 13.

Hamdallah, the president of An-Nanjah National University in the West Bank city of Nablus, took office on June 6 after being appointed by Abbas. His cabinet had met for the first time just last week.

Hamdallah had never intended to hold the job on a long-term basis, saying shortly after he was appointed that he would rule only for a "transitional period" until government uniting Abbas' Fatah party and the rival Hamas movement, which governs the Gaza Strip, could be formed.

Abbas' Fatah government exercises limited self-rule over the Israel-occupied West-Bank, while Hamas has controlled the Gaza Strip since their election victory there in 2006.

dr/pfd (AP, Reuters, AFP, dpa)

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