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The glossary is comprised of nearly 250 terms related to the Israeli-Palestinian context. Given the rapidly shifting landscape, these terms cannot capture the full range of nuances, narratives and historical events. This tool is meant as a starting point and we encourage you to continue your exploration of this topic through further research. Last update and review: September 2015.

Hamas-Fatah conflict

Also known as the Palestinian Civil War and as the Wakseh (Arabic for "self-inflicted ruin" or "humiliation"). The conflict between Hamas and Fatah began in January 2006 and has continued to greater and lesser extents until today (as of 2015), though internecine killings ended in 2009. Tensions rose in November 2004 when the death of Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasser Arafat left a political vacuum in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Hamas' dramatic win in Palestinian legislative elections in January 2006 challenged Fatah's longtime dominance of the political scene. Members of the international community, including Israel and the United States, rejected the election results, and implemented sanctions on the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority (PA). Fatah refused to join Hamas in a coalition, and the U.S. provided arms and training to Fatah. In February 2007, after a long political standoff and several violent clashes, Fatah and Hamas accepted the Saudi-brokered Mecca Accords and entered a short-lived unity government. It was dissolved in June 2007 when Hamas wrested control of the Gaza Strip, pre-empting a U.S.-backed Fatah coup against it, and PA President Mahmoud Abbas dissolved the unity government, calling for a state of emergency in the Fatah-dominated West Bank. Sporadic clashes between the two parties continued, but declined significantly after June 2007. After Egypt's regime fell in February 2011, Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank took to the streets calling for national unity, which led to the Cairo agreement brokered by Egypt in April 2011, paving the way for ongoing talks and negotiations between the two parties. Though a Fatah-dominated government remains in control of the West Bank and Hamas continues to control the Gaza Strip, both parties signed a new unity agreement in April 2014, the implementation of which has been delayed due to that summer's Gaza War (also known as Operation Protective Edge) and its aftermath. See "The Gaza Bombshell," David Rose, Vanity Fair, April 2008. See also "Text Of The (2011) Agreement Between Fatah And Hamas," Palestine Monitor, May 3, 2011; and "Ramifications of the Palestinian reconciliation agreement," May 2, 2011; and "Text of (2014) Fatah-Hamas Agrement," Jerusalem Post, Sept 24, 2014.