Thousands of Gazans Rally for Reconciliation

March 15, 2011 - 6:43 AM

Gaza City, Gaza Strip (AP) - Thousands of Gazans have begun streaming to a grass-roots rally urging the rival Palestinian governments to unite.

The majority of the estimated 10,000 protesters are waving the black, red, green and white Palestinian flags but some are holding the green banners of Gaza's ruling Hamas Party.

Hamas loyalists appeared to be the most prominently represented, but small groups loyal to the rival Fatah Party and other small Palestinian factions were also out. So, too, were Facebook activists who organized Tuesday's rally in Gaza City.

Bitter rivals Hamas and Fatah established rival governments in June 2007 after Hamas violently overran Gaza. Since then, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah has controlled only the West Bank, and reconciliation attempts have repeatedly failed.