DOHA: Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Meshaal has praised ‘the brave posture adopted by Qatar and its political leadership’ on Palestinian cause.
“Qatar is standing for a real cause and it should be proud of Israel’s criticism against it (for supporting Palestinian cause),” Al Sharq quoted Meshaal as saying in an interview appeared on Turkish news agency Anadolu.
“Our relationship with Qatar is not new. Hamas has broad relationship with Arab-Islamic countries, their brave governments and the people and the international community as well.
“We appreciate Qatar’s stand, the brave political stand of its government and people… Qatar’s support is not just for Hamas movement, the country extends its support to all the Palestinian people.
“We are determined to realise the demands of Palestinian people, especially lifting the siege on Gaza. The resistance movement will continue to defend ourselves and our territory. Palestinian people have been fighting for about hundred years. It is foolish to think that Palestinian people will get tired of fighting for their cause just in one month, one year or a few years. The Israeli statement that it has destroyed Hamas’s infrastructure is an exaggeration,” Meshaal said.
Dismissing Israel’s claims that Hamas breached the truce, he said: “Once again they are lying to the international community. They breached the truce on the false allegation that a soldier had been kidnapped. Their attempts to assassinate Hamas leaders were foiled. The Israeli statement that it has destroyed Hamas’s infrastructure is an exaggeration. There is only a very limited casualty in the military movement,” Meshaal said.
He went on to accuse Israel of perpetrating a “holocaust” in the Gaza Strip and said they are killing children, destroying residential areas, mosques, hospitals and UNRWA-run schools.
He said more than 2,000 Palestinians, one-third of whom children, had been killed in the recent Israeli aggression.
He said the Hamas movement is not interfering in Egyptian issues and demanded once again to open Rafah crossing as an international passage. Other international borders are open, so this should also be opened. “We want this passage between Palestine and Egypt to be opened.”
Asked to what extent Hamas was ready to go on the negotiation table with the Israel through interlocutors, he said: “Dialogue to reach an agreement through indirect negotiations is a means, not an end. So such dialogues are useless unless Palestinian people’s demands are met, regardless of what is going to happen in these dialogues and who the interlocutors are. We should be assured that there is a real situation that pushes the enemy to accept the Palestinian demands.”
To a query on Iran, Meshaal said Hamas was getting Iran’s support, both in terms of financial and military aid. This is not an unknown thing. But recently, over the past three years, we entered another phase of relations. Situations have now, however, changed, he added.