Hamas Leaders’ Families Flee Syria
Hamas leaders attached to the terror organization's long-standing Damascus bureau are fleeing Syria with their families as President Bashar al-Assad's regime grows increasingly unstable.
The family of Musa Abu Marzouq, deputy chairman of Hamas' so-called politburo, left Syria on Monday to stay in Egypt
The London-based Al-Hayat newspaper reported that Abu Marzouq departed Syria two weeks ago for Cairo to prepare their new home.
A source close to Abu Marzouk told Al-Hayat his family is now in Egypt will live a neighborhood in east Cairo. The source said Damascus was no longer safe, and therefore Hamas leaders are moving their families to neighboring Arab countries.
The family of Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal went to Amman as most of the movement's leaders most families have Jordanian citizenship.
However, Alkaidi Emad's family insisted on moving to Gaza despite the objections of security officials there.
Officials in Amman and Cairo have reportedly asked Hamas leaders to maintain a low profile while in their countries so as not to upset the United States, which regards Hamas as a terror organization.
However, sources in Cairo told al-Hayat that Egyptian officials provided Abu Marzouq with an apartment to use as his private office so he can continue to carry out "political activities" on behalf of Hamas.
Hamas, widely regarded as a child of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, was unable to openly operate under the regime of deposed President Hosni Mubarak.
Under Mubarak the Muslim Brotherhood was outlawed. However, the now-legal Muslim Brotherhood has won a sweeping victory in Egypt's recent polls. Combined with the gains of other Islamic parties, the Brotherhood is expected to dominate Cairo's next parliament.
Analysts say Hamas is likely to be given a relatively free hand in Egypt under the Muslim Brotherhood.
Hamas' flight from Syria comes amid growing tensions with the regime of Bashar al-Assad, whose bloody crackdown has been harshly criticized by Mashaal and his confederates in Damascus.
The backing of anti-regime protesters by Hamas in Syria has also led to tensions with its erstwhile Shiite ally Hizbullah in Lebanon - and its key financial backer Iran.
Both Iran and Hizbullah have backed Assad amid the unrest that threatens to topple his regime.