Ties between Hamas, Egypt recently improved: official

Source: Xinhua| 2019-03-04 23:42:46|Editor: Mu Xuequan
Video PlayerClose

GAZA, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Ismail Haniyeh, the politburo chief of Islamic Hamas movement, said Monday that ties between his movement and Egypt have recently recovered and improved.

Haniyeh's remarks were made at his office in Gaza city in a meeting with a group of Palestinian reporters, who work for local Palestinian, Arab and international news organizations, including Xinhua. The meeting lasted for two hours.

He briefed the Palestinian journalists and reporters in details on his last visit in Egypt, which went on for 24 days. Haniyeh, who came back to Gaza last week, said "ties with Egypt are stable and deep."

"We turned the page of the past. Today we are talking about constructing a strategic relationship between Hamas and Egypt," said Haniyeh, adding "our ties with Egypt are now positive and influential."

Ties between Hamas and Egypt had deteriorated after the Islamic movement supported former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, member in the Muslim Brotherhood Movement in Egypt, and his party.

An Egyptian court had also outlawed Hamas and its armed wing al-Qassam Brigades and accused the movement of supporting violent actions carried out in Egypt.

"I reaffirmed to the Egyptian officials that not only the Palestinian people, but also Hamas movement are so concerned and careful over the national security of Egypt and stability in Egypt," said Haniyeh.

Asked by Xinhua if his movement's ties with Egypt would influence the ties between Hamas and Iran, Haniyeh said "not at all ... no contradiction in the ties between Hamas and Egypt and between Hamas and Iran."

"Egypt plays a central role in the Arab world and Iran also has a regional influence and supports the Palestinian resistance against the occupation," said Haniyeh.

He spoke in details about the files that he and a senior Hamas delegation had discussed in Cairo with senior security intelligence officials for more than three weeks.

Deep feuds between Hamas movement and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah Party, which began when Hamas had violently seized control of the Gaza Strip, are blocking mediation to end it and achieve reconciliation.

Haniyeh stressed that Hamas movement rejects to join parliamentary election only, adding that his movement wants to join general elections.

"We won't accept holding parliamentary election only. We reject holding parliamentary election in the West Bank only and exclude Gaza and Jerusalem. We want general elections in Palestine," said Haniyeh.

He affirmed that Hamas presented to Egypt its proposal of forming a unity government that comprises all Palestinian factions, including Hamas and Fatah, adding that "this government must be a unity one, not technocrat or academic."

"After forming the unity government, we prepare for holding parliamentary and presidential elections in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, and then we go for elections of the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian National Council," he said.

Earlier on Sunday, a senior Hamas official had said that a senior Egyptian security intelligence delegation is preparing to visit soon Gaza, Israel and the West Bank to "seriously intervene to achieve calm with Israel and internal reconciliation."