Hamas refuses to recognize Israel


BETHLEHEM (BNO NEWS) — Hamas party leader Mahmoud Az-Zahhar on Wednesday said that his faction refuses to recognize Israel as it would be the best for future generations, the Ma’an news agency reported.

Az-Zahhar also said that Hamas is ready to recognize a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders or any part of Palestine. Traditionally, the Hamas party demanded a modern state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

“However, a formal recognition of Israel would cancel the right of the next generations to liberate the lands,” added Az-Zahhar “What will be the fate of the five million Palestinians who have been exiled since 1948 when Israel was recognized by the United Nations?”

On the other hand, the Hamas leader confirmed the decision to maintain the truce with Israel as decided along the Fatah party. Az-Zahhar added the move was part of the resistance and stressed that “truce is not peace.”

On May 4, Fatah, Hamas and all other Palestinian factions signed an historic unity deal in Cairo which was welcomed by the international community but condemned by the Israeli government.

After the signing, the two main factions, Hamas and Fatah, began talks to form the technocrat government, which will take responsibility to prepare for new parliamentary and presidential elections.

As a result, the Hamas-led government in Gaza and the Fatah-led cabinet in the West Bank (Palestinian Authority) will be dissolved and replaced by a single cabinet of independent technocrats. Details of the unity government have not been released.

It is expected that elections will be held within a year. In addition, the Palestinian security forces in the two territories will be unified and a reconstruction project in Gaza will be launched.

The factions are also discussing the fate of current Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, Salam Fayyad, as some say he should remain in his post, mainly due to his successful 2009 state-building plan.

Israel urged the Palestinian Authority to choose either peace with Israel or peace with Hamas as there “is no possibility for peace with both.” The two sides engaged in the last year’s unsuccessful peace talks amidst Hamas rejection.

The negotiations were stalled after Israel refused to extend a moratorium on settlement building in occupied Palestinian territory in September. In response, the Palestinian Authority broke off direct talks after as recommended by Hamas.

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