Continued from page 1

Mr. Areikat said the U.N. vote proved that “about 95 percent of the world’s population” is on the side of the Palestinians.

“Our leadership is hoping that the international community, the United States and Israel will seize on this opportunity and move forward engaging in a genuine political process with clear terms of reference that would lead to an end of the conflict once and for all,” he said.

“People can act and react, punish and reward; nothing is going to really change the fact that on Nov. 29 the U.N. General Assembly recognized Palestine as a nonmember state,” he added.

At the United Nations, 138 countries voted in favor, nine opposed and 41 abstained.

The U.S. voted against the measure.

Fatah, the Palestinian faction that rules the West Bank, and Hamas, the Islamist militant group that controls the Gaza Strip, have taken steps toward rapprochement after last month’s conflict with Israel. The Palestinian groups have opposed each other since 2007.

Hamas supporters last week held a rally in the West Bank city of Nablus for the first time since 2007.

The Gaza conflict revived calls for ending the division between Hamas and Fatah, Mr. Areikat said.

He said both sides now are waiting for an invitation from Egypt to come to Cairo to discuss the implementation of an agreement reached in Qatar a year ago. In that deal, the Palestinian factions agreed on three points: to use only nonviolent resistance against Israeli occupation, accept a two-state solution based on 1967 borders, and hold elections in the Palestinian territories.

“We will continue to insist on these three points in any discussions with Hamas,” Mr. Areikat said.

Hamas’ exiled leader, Khaled Meshaal, last week attended a “”victory rally” in Gaza during which he refused to recognize Israel’s right to exist.

Mr. Areikat reiterated the PLO’s recognition of Israel.

“Any future reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas must be based on a common denominator, and the PLO has clearly stated … that we are not planning to move toward Hamas’ position when it comes to how we need to resolve the conflict,” he said.