The US is about to score an own goal in the middle east as it unconditionally backs Israel’s genocide in Gaza, threatening to create a regional war.

China is to mediate talks between main Palestinian factions, Hamas and Fatah, as part of its broader bid to play a diplomatic role in the Israel-Palestine issue, according to The Arab Weekly and agencies on April 27.

“We support strengthening the authority of the Palestinian National Authority and support all Palestinian factions in achieving reconciliation and increasing solidarity through dialogue and consultation,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Wang Wenbin on April 26.

Despite Israel’s war on Gaza, both Hamas and Fatah have failed to overcome their grievances.

The animosity between the competing factions dates back to 2007 following Hamas’ election win over Fatah, in Gaza.

A bloody battle ensued, resulting in Fatah’s ousting from the Gaza strip in 2007.

Hamas is labelled by the US as a terrorist organisation, with the US solely vouching support for the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority (PA).

READ: US says Hamas shifted goal posts on hostage talks

Several countries in the region have previously endeavoured to facilitate dialogue between Hamas and Fatah, including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey.

But deep-seated mistrust continues to persist between the factions.

This visit marks the first publicly recognised instance of a Hamas delegation travelling to China since the onset of the Gaza conflict.

It comes a month after Chinese diplomat Wang Kejian met with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar, in March, as reported by the Chinese foreign ministry.

READ: Russia and China veto US “hypocritical” draft resolution

China has increasingly looked to flex its diplomatic prowess in the Middle East in recent years.

Beijing was credited in 2023 for fostering a landmark peace agreement between long-time regional adversaries, Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Amid Israel’s devastation in Gaza, China has worked to keep the Palestine issue on the international agenda, advocating for an Israeli-Palestinian peace conference and a definitive commitment for a two-state solution.

At a hearing over Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories, held by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in February, China affirmed that the Palestinians “must not be denied” justice.

Beijing has also called upon Palestine’s acceptance into the United Nations. Due to Palestine’s lack of state status, it only holds a non-member observer status, granted in 2012.

While Palestine is allowed to participate in General Assembly debates, it does not have the full rights afforded to full members of the UN, such as the right to vote on General Assembly resolutions.

Palestine also recently repeated its request for full membership on April 2, sending a letter to the UN Security Council president alongside a list of 140 countries that have already recognised Palestine’s legitimacy.

Chinese diplomat Wang Yi said upgrading Palestine to member-status would “rectify a prolonged historical injustice”.


The Arab Weekly / Agencies

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