by WorldTribune Staff, July 12, 2016
Hamas officials slammed remarks by Saudi Arabia’s ex-intel chief that Hamas is “responsible for the crimes Israel has committed” in the Gaza Strip.
“Hamas is responsible for the slaughter in the Gaza Strip following its bad decisions in the past, and the haughtiness it shows by firing useless rockets at Israel, which contribute nothing to the Palestinian interest,” Turki al-Faisal said at the Free Iran conference in Paris on July 9. “The Hamas rockets pose no threat to the Israeli occupation, even when they reach Tel Aviv.”
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Faisal accused Iran of destabilizing the region and “spreading chaos” through its support for militant organizations including Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).
In a statement published on July 10 on its official website, Hamas slammed al-Faisal’s remarks:
“Hamas condemns the statement of the The King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies Chairman Turki al-Faisal, in which he belittled and made accusations against Hamas and the Palestinian resistance. We in Hamas reject these baseless and false defamations. One who observes these issues closely knows that Hamas is a Palestinian resistance movement against the Zionist occupation in the land of Palestine and has an agenda in the interest of its people and issue,” the statement said.
PIJ also denounced Faisal’s remarks in a statement to Amad News, a Palestinian news outlet. “We in the Palestinian Islamic Jihad condemn these statements and emphasize that they are false accusations that only serve the Zionist agenda that seeks to liquidate the Palestinian issue and conquer all Arab and Islamic capitals,” the statement said.
Mkhaimar Abusada, a professor of political science at Al-Azhar University in Gaza City told The Jerusalem Post that Faisal’s statements reflect the tense relations between Hamas and Saudi Arabia that date back nearly a decade. “Saudi Arabia has not forgotten that Hamas was one of Iran’s allies until the eruption of the Syrian revolution, before which Iran was supporting Hamas with financial aid,” he said.
“The Saudis saw Hamas’s takeover of the Gaza Strip as disrespect for Saudi mediation between Hamas and Fatah.”