Hamas relations with Egypt 'unharmed' despite ruling

Hamas relations with Egypt 'unharmed' despite ruling
2 min read
07 March, 2015
Sources in Gaza tell al-Araby al-Jadeed that recent Egyptian branding of Hamas as "terrorist" was "judicial only" and will not affect political relationships.
Hamas was outlawed by Egypt in a decision last week [AFP]

Egypt's recent decision to brand Hamas a "terrorist" group will not harm relations between the organisation and Cairo, according to sources in Gaza.

Reliable sources in Gaza told al-Araby al-Jadeed that the Ramadan Shallah, the secretary general of "Islamic Jihad" had been told while in Cairo that the Egyptian judicial ruling had not been endorsed officially.

Shallah relayed that information to the deputy chairman of the political bureau of Hamas, Ismail Haniya.

The source, who requested anonymity, said that Haniya had also received assurances from the assistant secretary general for Palestinian Affairs at the Arab League Mohammad Sbeih, that official Egypt did not adopt the judicial ruling against Hamas.

The same sources said that Hamas had sent positive gestures in this regard to the Egyptian side.

Haniya, in his Friday prayers sermon yesterday, confirmed that Hamas had received assuring messages from Egyptian political leaderships that the ruling was a "judicial matter" that would not affect the relationship between Egypt and Gaza.

Haniya said Hamas had asked the Secretary General of the Arab League, Nabil Elarabi, to meet Palestinian and Egyptian officials in order to clear "the atmosphere" and contain the repercussions of the Egyptian court ruling.

Haniya said his movement was innocent of all charges raised by the Egyptian media, and said he did not believe Egyptian media reports that Egypt was preparing to attack Gaza.

He said Hamas had no presence inside Sinai, and that it was a Palestinian resistance movement fighting Israel within the borders of Palestinian territories.

This is an edited translation of the original Arabic.