Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Time for Palestine? Not so Fast, says Hamas


It's no shock the U.S. and Israel oppose the Palestinian plan to ask the UN for recognition of a Palestinian state. More surprising is that the militant Palestinian group Hamas is also against it.
Established in 1987 during the first Palestinian intifada as an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas was founded to eliminate the state of Israel and create an Islamist state in the areas that are now Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The group is a political rival of Fatah, the main faction within the Palestine Liberation Organization, from which it won political control of the Gaza Strip four years ago.
That helps explain Hamas's first objection to the UN move. The plan to go to the UN Security Council is the initiative of Mahmoud Abbas, the Fatah leader who governs in the West Bank and is the president of the Palestinian National Authority, the body charged with carrying out limited Palestinian self-rule in the Oslo peace accords. Hamas complains that Fatah acted on its own in deciding to take the statehood bid to the UN.

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