Abbas to condition Hamas gov’t on violence rejection

Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas is planning to order the Hamas militant group to renounce violence and recognize Israel if it wants to take over the Palestinian government, officials said Thursday. The ultimatum set the stage for a showdown between Hamas and Abbas, whose Fatah Party was routed in last month’s legislative election. Abbas is under growing international and Israeli pressure to shun Hamas unless it changes its violent ideology. Abbas is expected to deliver the ultimatum during a speech on Saturday marking the first session of the newly elected, Hamas-dominated parliament, Palestinian officials said on condition of anonymity because the parliament has not yet been sworn in.