Hamas officials: We'll honor unofficial truce with Israel

'Al-Ahram' quotes Palestinian sources saying factions agree to continue calm in Gaza following upcoming signing of Fatah-Hamas unity deal.

By JPOST.COM STAFF,
May 3, 2011 14:12
1 minute read.
PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh

PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS/Suhaib Salem)

Hamas will honor an unofficial truce with Israel after signing a reconciliation deal with Fatah, officials from the Islamist group were quoted by the Associated Press as saying Tuesday.

Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas are expected to sign an Egyptian-sponsored reconciliation agreement in Cairo on Wednesday.

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The anonymous comments came as an Egyptian paper reported that the two rival Palestinian factions will  maintain a Gaza truce with Israel following the scheduled signing of the deal. The Al-Ahram report quoted Palestinian sources.

Senior Hamas official Mahmoud Zahar said the unity deal was the direct result of the uprising in Egypt and the ouster of Hosni Mubarak, Army Radio reported on Tuesday.

On Sunday, Mashaal's deputy Musa Abu Marzouk was quoted as saying that Hamas would not recognize Israel’s right to exist, despite the agreement to form a Palestinian unity government.

“Hamas has a principled position regarding this issue,” Marzouk said. “We won’t recognize the Zionist entity. Our rights are still usurped and it’s illogical for us to recognize the Zionist entity because that would be at the expense of our stolen lands and our people in the refugee camps.”

Marzouk said that Hamas did not see any connection between recognizing Israel’s right to exist and the establishment of a Palestinian state.

“Most of the Arab countries don’t recognize Israel, and yet they continue to deal with the international community,” he said. “And many European countries did not recognize Israel until recently. Therefore the international community should not look into this issue.”


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