Daily Israel Report
Show More

OpEds


Haniyeh Decries 'Judaization' of Jerusalem

Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh has called for Arab nations to back his movement in fighting the 'Judaization' of Jerusalem.
By Gabe Kahn.
First Publish: 12/27/2011, 7:38 PM

Hamas' Gaza chief Ismail Haniyeh called on Arab leaders to stop the 'Judaization' of Jerusalem on Tuesday.

Haniyeh's call for Arab leaders to pressure Israel into not asserting its sovereignty in its eternal and indivisible capital came from Cairo, where he kicked off his whirlwind tour of  Egypt, Sudan, Qatar, Bahrain, Tunisia, and Turkey.

A statement from Haniyeh's office said Haniyeh discussed "key Palestinian issues" with the Arab League general secretary Nabil al-Arabi in their meeting.

Of particular importance to Haniyeh was the "ongoing Judaization of Jerusalem" and Israeli policies that he says "suppress Palestinian identity and culture" in the city.

"Arab nations must educate their people about Jerusalem to evoke the importance of the city," Haniyeh insisted.

Haniyeh did not say whether that education should include archeological and historical evidence of the deep Jewish roots in Jerusalem dating back at least 3,000 years.

"The revolutions are the proof that the future is ours as Palestinians - as well as the Islamic and Arab people's -  the occupation cannot escape from the legitimate Palestinian demand to have a state with Jerusalem as its capital."

Haniyeh's tour of Arab capitals marks the first time he has departed Gaza since Hamas seized it from the Palestinian Authority in a bloody 2007 putsch. Tensions with Hosni Mubarak in Egypt and fears Israel would target Haniyeh previously precluded his travelling abroad.

Bouyed by Mubarak's ouster, Hamas has sought to capitalize from the gains of Islamic movements at the voting booth in the 'Arab Spring' and has moved to rally the Arab world against Israel.

It has also decided to join the Palestinian Liberation Organization along with its Gaza terror confederates in the hopes of expanding its influence to PA enclaves in Judea and Samaria.

Hamas co-founder Mahmoud al-Zahar predicted a sweeping victory when the PA holds elections in May 2012.

Fatah and Hamas have both been beating the unilateralist drums and tapping anti-Israel sentiments vowing 'popular resistance' to garner support in the polls and broader Arab world.

Both groups maintain 'armed resistance' is the only road to an 'indivisible Palestine' that leaves no room for the Jewish state.