Hamas ready to disband armed wing and become a political party: Turkish FM

Ahram Online , AFP , Thursday 18 Apr 2024

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan stated on Wednesday that Hamas is open to disbanding its armed wing and continuing as a political party after recognizing a Palestinian State based on the 1967 borders, Middle East Eye reported.

Qatar s Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani (R) and Turkey s Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan give a joint press conference in Doha on April 17, 2024.AFP


The Middle East Eye posted a video on social media showing Fidan saying that during his political meetings with Hamas over the years they told him that they would accept a Palestinian state within the borders of 1967.

He added that Hamas said that with the establishment of a Palestinian state, Hamas, as an armed resistance movement, would have no reason to exist and would continue to practice politics as a political party.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday he would host Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Turkey this weekend.

"The leader of the Palestinian cause will be my guest this weekend," Erdogan, an outspoken critic of Israel, told lawmakers.

While Erdogan did not disclose the place where he would meet Haniyeh, a Turkish official said they would hold talks on Saturday at the Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul.

"Even if only I, Tayyip Erdogan, remain, I will continue as long as God gives me life to defend the Palestinian struggle and to be the voice of the oppressed Palestinian people," the president said.

The Turkish foreign minister said he spent three hours with Haniyeh and his aides during a visit to Qatar on Wednesday. Fidan said the meeting saw "a wide exchange of views, especially about negotiations for a ceasefire."

Qatar, a mediator between Israel and Hamas, acknowledged Wednesday that negotiations to end hostilities in Gaza and liberate hostages were "stalling".

Fidan said he spoke with Haniyeh, who lives in Qatar, about how Hamas "must clearly express its expectations, especially about a two-state solution."

Erdogan's last meeting with Haniyeh was in July 2023, when Erdogan hosted Haniyeh and Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas at the presidential palace in Ankara. Haniyeh had last met Fidan in Turkey on 2 January.

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