Syria raids, seals Hamas offices after leaders leave

Hamas says Assad's forces confiscated property in a sign of increased souring of relations between the once close allies.

By REUTERS
November 7, 2012 15:23
1 minute read.
Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal

Khaled Mashaal 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

GAZA - Syrian security forces have raided and sealed the Damascus office of Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal, who left the city months ago along with other leaders of the Palestinian Islamist group, Hamas said on Wednesday.

Relations between Hamas and long-time ally Syria have soured since Mashaal and other senior officials quietly quit Damascus late last year after President Bashar Assad stepped up a crackdown on anti-government protests.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Syria is home to at least 500,000 Palestinians, according to the United Nations. Syria's uprising has split loyalties, with many Palestinians sympathetic to the 19-month-old uprising by their fellow Sunni Muslims, and others backing Assad, whose Alawite faith derives from Shi'ite Islam.

In recent weeks, dozens of Palestinians have been killed by Syrian army shelling of rebel positions in and around the Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria, opposition campaigners said.

Mashaal's office, which had also served as his residence and the group's main headquarters in Damascus, was raided on Monday, Hamas said in a statement.

It said government forces confiscated property and sealed the building, which had been guarded by Hamas members.

Syrian security services closed the Damascus office of Emad al-Alami, a senior Hamas political official, on Tuesday, the statement said. Alami is currently in the Gaza Strip, an enclave Hamas has controlled since 2007. Mashaal's whereabouts are unknown.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


Mashaal had been based in Damascus since 2001. Syria became a safe haven for him and other Hamas officials, who could have faced Israeli attack in the Gaza Strip, a territory closely monitored by Israel and under a blockade.

Click for full JPost coverage

Israel, the United States and the European Union have classified Hamas as a terrorist organization and shun the group over its refusal to recognize Israel, renounce violence and accept existing interim Israeli-Palestinian peace agreements.

Hamas angered Assad last year when it rejected pressure from the Syrian leader to hold a rally in his support in Damascus.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

The aftermath of an Iranian ballistic missile strike on the Koya headquarters of the KDP-I Iranian o
November 15, 2018
Senior IRGC commander: Israeli agent killed in September strikes on Kurds

By ANNA AHRONHEIM