Top Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath, a key member of the Fatah Party started by Yasser Arafat, says his rivals inside Hamas appear to be moderating their positions and could be moving toward a deal for a unified government.

Shaath told The Daily Beast that the weakening of Syria’s government—long a source of support for Hamas—in the face of civil unrest has changed the dynamic for Palestinians still trying to create a unified government that could negotiate with Israel with one voice.

“I see that the Hamas leadership, particularly after the erosion of their base in Damascus, is becoming more interested in unity with Fatah than before,” Shaath said in an interview this week.