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Iran Press TV

Israel-UAE normalization pact 'treacherous stab in the back of Palestinian people: Hamas leader

Iran Press TV

Friday, 21 August 2020 9:10 AM

The head of the political bureau of the Palestinian Hamas resistance movement has censured the deal between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel to establish full normal diplomatic relations, describing the agreement as a "treacherous stab in the back of the Palestinian nation."

"The UAE-Israel deal went against the grain of tradition besides the Arab and Muslim consensus. It is a treacherous stab in the back of Palestinian people," Ismail Haniyeh said in an exclusive interview with Turkey's Arabic-language TRT Arabi television news network late on Thursday.

Haniyeh then called on the UAE authorities to reverse their decision, stressing that three illusions have pushed Arab leaders to seek normalization with the Tel Aviv regime.

"The first illusion is that they think Muslim nations are in a state of defeat, and view Israel as victorious. The fact, however, is that such nations have not been defeated and that the Palestinian people have not stopped their struggle since the occupation of Palestinian lands," Haniyeh noted.

The senior Palestinian official added that the second illusion is that some rulers believe their political legitimacy is achieved through foreign support rather than their own people's backing, and that US support can only be achieved through establishment of relations with the Israeli regime.

"The third illusion is that some believe that Israel seeks peace and coexistence with the peoples of the [Middle East] region, but it is in fact an occupying regime founded on brutality and violence," Haniyeh pointed out.

He also praised the positions of Muslim countries concerning rejection of normalization with Israel and commitment to the issue of occupied Jerusalem al-Quds, stressing the need for reconciliation among Palestinian factions and formation of an inclusive national strategy against the Tel Aviv regime.

UAE-Israel deal to divide Muslims into "warring factions"

Malaysia's former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad has strongly denounced the normalization deal between the UAE and Israel, describing it as "a step backwards for peace" and a measure that will stir up conflicts in the Muslim world.

Mahathir said the agreement would "divide the Muslim world into warring factions and Israelis would spare no efforts to add fuel to the fire."

"They will increase the ability of the opponents to fight each other and there will be no peace even among Muslim countries," the 95-year-old Malaysian leader said.

"It bolsters the stand taken by Israel that Palestine belongs to it. Of course, there will be a reaction from the Palestinians and those who are sympathetic towards the Palestinians. This will mean prolonging the conflict in the Middle East," he noted.

Under the agreement between Israel and the UAE, the Tel Aviv regime allegedly agreed to "temporarily" suspend applying its own rule to further areas in the occupied West Bank and the strategic Jordan Valley that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had pledged to annex.

Israeli leaders, however, lined up last week to call UAE Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan's bluff that Israel's annexation plans were off the table after the deal.

"There is no change to my plan to extend sovereignty, our sovereignty in Judea and Samaria, in full coordination with the United States," Netanyahu said in Jerusalem al-Quds, using the biblical name for the occupied West Bank.

A senior Israeli source also said US President Donald Trump's administration had requested to temporarily suspend the announcement of annexations "to first implement the historic peace agreement with the UAE".

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said of the annexation that, "It's off the table now but it's not off the table permanently.

Israeli and UAE delegations will meet in the coming weeks to sign bilateral agreements covering sectors, including investment, tourism and direct flights and the opening of reciprocal embassies, according to the accord.

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