Hamas leaders argue over whether Haniyeh's presence at Soleimani's funeral was 'mistake'

Hamas' Khaled Mashaal fumes: Ismail Haniyeh's attendance at Soleimani's funeral was 'strategic mistake.'

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh
Flash 90

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh's participation in the funeral of Iranian commander Qassam Soleimani has led to serious disagreements within senior Hamas leadership, The Independent reported.

One of the harshest disagreements on the issue was between Haniyeh and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal.

"This was a strategic mistake," Mashaal said, adding that "it would have been enough if they would have sent a small delegation to Soleimani's funeral."

The Independent also said that Salafist organizations had threatened Hamas with terror attacks after Haniyeh attended the funeral, leading to a series of arrests in Gaza.

The site added that Omani officials refused to allow Haniyeh to enter for a diplomatic visit since he had attended Soleimani's funeral.

Meanwhile, Haniyeh remains in Malaysia, where he is building the terror organization's connections and relationship with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad.

Haniyeh left Gaza in December on his first major foreign tour since taking over as the group's leader in 2017. He has since visited Turkey, Egypt, and Malaysia as well Iran, where he participated in the funeral of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, who was killed by a US air strike in Iraq.

However, his decision to attend the funeral angered Saudi Arabia and Jordan, The Independent said.

It also angered Egypt, which has acted as a broker between Hamas and Israel. As a result, Egypt refused to allow Haniyeh to re-enter the country on his way to Gaza, and it is not clear that the ban will be lifted anytime soon.

A recent report by AFP said that Haniyeh will remain outside Gaza for a year, as part of a diplomatic mission.



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