We won't 'even listen' to Israel's disarming request: Hamas
Ahram Online , Wednesday 6 Aug 2014
Hamas leading figure says Israel was forced to negotiate because they could not win in Gaza


Ezzat Al-Rasheq, a leading Hamas figure, refused on Wednesday ‘even listen’ the Israeli demand of disarming the Palestinian factions in Gaza.

"As a delegation, we don't accept even listening to any suggestions in such aspect, and whoever [Israel] thinks he won the battle is wrong; the Palestinian people are the victors," AFP quoted Al-Rasheq as saying.

"Israel accepted the truce and withdrawal of its occupation forces from Gaza because they reached a dead-end; despite the pain, sacrifices, and patience, we emphasise the support of our people to the resistance."

Israel demands that Hamas, regarded by Tel Aviv and Washington as a terrorist group, disarm its armed group during the ongoing Cairo talks for ceasefire in Gaza.

Al-Rasheq’s quotes are in line with those of the Islamic Jihad's Ziyad Nakhala- currently attending the indirect negotiations in Egypt between Israel and the Palestinian delegation- to Ahram Online on Monday where he expressed rejection of any disarmament talk.

A report in Israeli papers last week unveiled the willingness of Israel's Premier Benjamin Netanyahu to gather international support for a conditional deal based on disarmament of Palestinian factions in return for Gaza reconstruction.

According to the newspaper, such a deal would encompass reducing the blockade and re-building Gaza through Western states. Yet, with strict supervision for the entrance of materials that could be used for weaponry-related purposes, such as cement and metal tubes.

"No one can accept such a matter because we are under occupation, which gives us the right to use all legitimate means of resistance," the Jihad leader said.

He concluded by saying that this issue was not tackled duringthe ongoing Cairo talks. "Discussing it is not even acceptable," he asserted.

Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, asserted on Tuesday that "chapters of the battle against the Israeli entity" will resume until Israel admits the rights of the Palestinians and their "just demands".

On its website, the brigades state that the current phase is a "transitional" one.

"The attitude of the enemy [Israel] will determine the path of the combat and its end result; our orientations in the next few days will be conditioned with achieving the hopes of our people, who we will not ignore," emphasised the Islamist group.

"Our mujahedeen [fighters] are still in a state of alert. They are ready to perform their roles according to what the leadership of the Palestinian resistance decides for the interest of the people."

Egypt mediated a 72-hour truce on Tuesday between Israel and Hamas-led Palestinian factions that officials hope will lead to additional talks and a more permanent end to the Gaza war.

Israeli ground forces withdrew from the Gaza Strip ahead of the truce, with a military spokesman saying the main goal of destroying cross-border infiltration tunnels had been achieved, Reuters reported.

The Israeli war on Gaza has led to the death of 1,875 Palestinians since it began on 8 July.

On the Israeli side 64 soldiers and three civilians have been killed in clashes and shelling in and around the enclave.

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