GAZA, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haneya on Wednesday stressed that holding Fatah's rally of its 48th foundation anniversary in the Gaza Strip sets a stage for ending internal schism between the two rivals.
"We hope that holding a central rally for Fatah in Gaza would pave the road for a real reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah," said Haneya, who leads Hamas government that has been ruling the Gaza Strip since June 2007. Hamas' security forces have been banning any kinds of Fatah celebrations for over six years here.
According to a statement, Haneya demanded Hamas-controlled security personnel to exert all efforts to make Fatah anniversary rally a success.
"Hopefully this positive atmosphere should be invested to achieve national unity," Haneya said in the statement after his meeting with Fatah Central Committee member Nabil Shaath in Gaza.
Shaath arrived in Gaza Tuesday to participate in the Fatah rally, which is expected to be held on Friday.
For his part, Shaath stressed that the anniversary of Fatah is a national occasion that must be shared by all Palestinians.
Meantime, dozens of thousands of Fatah supporters and leaders in the Gaza Strip have been celebrating the 48 anniversary of their movement, which was founded by late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat on Jan. 1, 1965.
Driving cars, motorcycles or on foot, Fatah supporters are gathering at the former security headquarters of the Fatah-led Palestinian National Authority (PNA) in Gaza city's downtown.
The place, where the central Fatah rally is scheduled to be held at, is called "al-Saraya" which was destroyed by Israel in a series of heavy airstrikes over the past six years.
Last month, the PNA permitted Hamas to celebrate its 25th anniversary in the West Bank, marking the first time Hamas held public rallies there in five years.