Hamas’s Haniyeh: ‘No Mercy’ for Arab States Who Betray Palestinian Cause
Story Code : 891731
Asked about the recent “normalization” pacts agreed with Israel by the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, Haniyeh said that any deal an Arab country makes with Israel will eventually threaten that country.
“We know Israeli leaders better than them. We know how they think. We would like to tell our brothers in the United Arab Emirates that they will lose as a result of those agreements because Israel’s only interest is to seek military and economic foothold...,” Haniyeh told the Middle East Eye on Monday.
“They will use your country as a doorstep. We don’t want to see the UAE being used as an Israeli launchpad.”
“The Zionist project is an expansionist project. Its objective is to create a greater Israel. We don’t want to see the Emiratis or the Bahrainis or the Sudanese being used as vehicles for this project. History will show no mercy, the people will not forget, and humanitarian law will not forgive,” he said.
The Emirati and Bahraini agreements with Israel, which were signed at the White House last month, have prompted speculation that Saudi Arabia could be preparing to follow its two close Persian Gulf allies’ lead.
Last week, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, who served as Saudi ambassador to Washington for over 30 years, described Palestinian leaders as failures who had consistently missed opportunities for a settlement with Israel.
His remarks, in an interview with the state-run al-Arabiya TV, were interpreted as a sign of a softening of King Salman’s policy of refusing to recognize Israel before a Palestinian state is created.
Haniyeh said Hamas had detected “positive changes” on the ground in the West Bank as a result of reconciliation talks with rival Palestinian faction Fatah aimed at forming a national unity government.
Haniyeh admitted the challenges were enormous, “We witnessed positive changes on the ground. I do not want to sound over-optimistic and pre-empt events but there are positive things. The challenges are enormous and we are still at the beginning of the road.”
Senior Palestinian sources said that the PA’s security cooperation with Israel in the West Bank had “almost” stopped.
The recent arrest of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a senior Hamas leader, who spent a total of 21 years in prison, was condemned by Fatah’s Jibril Rajoub who is leading negotiations with Hamas.
Haniyeh said that Hamas and Fatah are considering running a joint list in Palestinian elections set to take place next year for the first time since the 2006 vote.