Israel slams Hamas deal

TEL AVIV. A Palestinian deal to form a unity government that includes Hamas has been condemned by the Israeli government as a decisive step away from the peace process.

TEL AVIV. A Palestinian deal to form a unity government that includes Hamas has been condemned by the Israeli government as a decisive step away from the peace process.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas signed the deal with Hamas political chief Khaled Meshaal in Doha under the gaze of the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his ministers that if Mr Abbas implemented the agreement, "he chooses to abandon the path of peace and join himself to Hamas".

"I say to Abu Mazen [Mr Abbas]," Mr Netanyahu said in a text message, "either it's peace with Hamas or peace with Israel. You can't have both."

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