February 9, 2012 - 1:00am

RAMALLAH, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday got support from his Fatah party and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to the agreement he had reached with rival Hamas movement.

The Central Committee of Fatah and the PLO's Executive Committee met in the West Bank city of Ramallah and welcomed the deal, which was struck in Qatar Sunday.

According to the agreement, Abbas will form an interim government to prepare for elections in the Palestinian territories, including in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

Hamas' chief Khaled Mashaal joint Abbas and Qatar's Emir in declaring the deal Sunday.

A statement issued after the meeting of the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah Thursday explained that Abbas' government will focus on rebuilding the Gaza Strip and overseeing general and presidential elections.

The statement also called for starting the electoral process by updating voter records.

Earlier Thursday, chairman of the Central Elections Commission (CEC) Hanna Nasser accused Hamas authorities of obstructing the work of the CEC in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas' government "asked us to linger in preparing for elections," Nasser explained, adding that this delay was " unjustifiable."

In 2009, Hamas seized the CEC headquarters and drove out its staff. The offices were open again last month, according to understandings reached between Hamas and Abbas' Fatah party last December.

Abbas has recently issued a decree to form the CEC and nominate its members, as part of a reconciliation agreement Egypt brokered between Hamas and Fatah last May.

The agreement seeks an end to Palestinian political split, worsened when Hamas routed pro-Abbas forces and took over the Gaza Strip in 2007.


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