Fatah and Hamas
The Movement for the National Liberation of Palestine (Fatah) was founded in the early 1960s by Yasser Arafat and friends of his in Algeria, Fatah was originally opposed to the founding of the PLO, which it viewed as a political opponent. Backed by Syria, Fatah began carrying out terrorist raids against Israeli targets in 1965, launched from Jordan, Lebanon and Egyptian-occupied Gaza (so as not to draw reprisals against Syria). Dozens of raids were carried out each year, exclusively against civilian targets.Hamas:
Fatah's popularity among Palestinians grew until it took over control of the PLO in 1968. Since then it has been the PLO's most prominent faction, under the direct control of PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat.
"Fatah" is a reverse acronym of the Arabic, Harekat at-Tahrir al-Wataniyyeh al-Falastiniyyeh. The word "Fatah" means "conquest by means of jihad [Islamic holy war]".
Hamas (an acronym for Harakat al-Muqawamat al-Islamiyya, or "Islamic Resistance Movement") is a radical fundamentalist group founded on December 14, 1987 by the Muslim Brotherhood. ( Hamas describes itself as "one of the wings of the Muslim Brother[hood].") As a single Arabic word rather than an acronym, "Hamas" means "zeal." Its avowed purpose is "liberating Palestine" from the Jew "oppressors," whose presence in the Middle East it considers an affront to Muslims' rightful sovereignty in the land of the Prophet Mohammad. The organization's individual co-founders were Ahmed Yassin and Abdel Aziz al Rantisi.Gulf News: Hamas says no unity talks while Fatah holds prisoners
With tens of thousands of loyal supporters, Hamas' strength is concentrated principally in the Gaza Strip and a few areas of the West Bank. The group's leadership is dispersed throughout these same areas, with a few senior leaders residing in Syria, Lebanon, and the Gulf States. Hamas receives some funding from Iran but is supported primarily by donations from Palestinian expatriates around the world and private benefactors in Arab nations.
There will be no reconciliation talks with Fatah while Hamas activists remain in detention, a Hamas official was quoted as saying on Tuesday.
Palestinian groups Hamas and Fatah are expected to resume reconciliation talks in Cairo next month but Hamas.
"We will not sit down [with Fatah] until they release [Hamas prisoners], and whoever does not want to release them does not want reconciliation," Salah al Bardawil told Egypt's Al Masry Al Yom newspaper.
Bardawil headed a delegation of Hamas officials from Gaza that met over the weekend with Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Sulaiman to bolster a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.
Both Hamas and Fatah have detained each other's members since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip in 2007.