Kadima MK Nachman Shai: Netanyahu's actions are legitimizing Hamas

"In contrast to his pre-election promises, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is working assiduously to legitimize the rule of Hamas in Gaza, a terror organization for which the destruction of Israel is a top priority," a statement on the Web site of Kadima MK Nachman Shai said Sunday. "In an agreement being concocted back stage away from the public eye, the government is joining the Egyptian initiative to thaw relations between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. This will effectively legitimize the rule of Hamas in the Gaza Strip. This is why Defense Minister Ehud Barak was dispatched to Washington in such a hurry," the statement said. "Thus, against his previous statements and campaign promises, the prime minister is making Hamas an empowered partner in the Palestinian Authority, while Hamas has not changed even a single letter in its political charter," which calls for Israel's destruction, the statement concluded. Barak is due to fly to the US on Monday for talks with Mideast envoy George Mitchell.