Hamas official Mahmoud Zahar.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Hamas is currently focusing its energy's on taking power in the West Bank, a senior official in the organization said Monday.
Mahmoud Zahar told Hamas's Al Aksa TV that the organization should build on its successes in legislative and municipal elections in the West Bank and move to consolidate its power.
Zahar denied reports that there was progress in talks with Israel to bring about a long-term truce
between Hamas in Gaza and the Jewish State.
Former UK prime minister Tony Blair has reportedly been trying to broker a long-term truce between the sides in recent weeks. Zahar said that Hamas turned down an invitation from Blair to send its representatives to London in order to discussed the proposed agreement.
Kayed al-Ghul, a senior official of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said earlier this month
that the proposals received by Hamas through Blair call for halting the development of weapons and for the digging of tunnels, in return for lifting the blockade on the Gaza Strip.
The proposals, according to the PFLP official, also envisage the creation of a “water passage” to the Gaza Strip that would be under the supervision of Israel. He added that various international parties have been making serious efforts to reach an agreement between Hamas and Israel that would be compatible with the latter’s conditions.
Israel has denied that is carrying out negotiations with Hamas.
Zahar said that Hamas's "resistance" against Israel had raised the standing of the organization in the world and brought international players to attempt to make agreements with the group. He said that the success of the organization in Gaza should be replicated in the West Bank.
He called reports that Hamas was near a long-term truce with Israel "lies that have no basis in reality."