Senior Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar recently declared that "removing the Jews from the land they occupied in 1948 is an immutable principle" in the Koran.
Speaking to Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV on March 8, Al-Zahar also made clear, "Our position is: Palestine in its entirety, and not a grain of soil less."
The comments were translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
“Allah says (in the Koran): ‘And drive them out from wherever they have driven you out,’” said Al-Zahar, who added that the Jews “drove out” the Arabs “from within the 1948 borders”.
“So you should drive them out from within the 1948 borders, like they drove you out,” he continued. “Hence, removing the Jews from the land they occupied in 1948 is an immutable principle, because it appears in the Book of Allah.”
“Our dispute with the Palestinian factions that talk about the 1967 borders is one pertaining to faith,” claimed Al-Zahar.
He further urged members of the Hamas and the Islamic Jihad never to mention the term “1967 borders” and added, “We have liberated Gaza, part of Palestine, but I am not prepared to accept just Gaza…our position is: Palestine in its entirety, and not a grain of soil less.”
“We will fight them wherever we can – on the ground, underground, and if we have airplanes, we will fight them from the skies,” vowed Al-Zahar.
The comments are exposed following a recent report suggesting that Hamas, as part of its desire to achieve international recognition, would accept the pre-1967 borders. Al-Zahar’s remarks say otherwise.
Hamas expects this declaration to help it in its contacts with the Egyptian authorities who are demanding that Hamas be fully disconnected from the Muslim Brotherhood, which is blacklisted as a terrorist organization in Egypt.