Da Ha'aretz del 30/01/2006
Originale su http://www.haaretzdaily.com/hasen/spages/676190.html

Hamas hints at long-term truce in return for 1967 borders

di Arnon Regular

A long-term truce (hudna) with Israel is possible if Israel retreats to its pre-1967 borders and releases Palestinian prisoners, Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar told CNN on Monday.

"We can expect to establish our independent state on the area before '67 and we can give a long-term hudna," Zahar told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

Zahar laid out a series of conditions that he said could lead to years of co-existence alongside Israel. He said that if Israel "is ready to give us the national demand to withdraw from the occupied area [in] '67; to release our detainees; to stop their aggression; to make geographic link between Gaza Strip and West Bank, at that time, with assurance from other sides, we are going to accept to establish our independent state at that time, and give us one or two, 10, 15 years time in order to see what is the real intention of Israel after that."

Asked about Hamas' call for Israel's destruction, Zahar would not say whether that remains the goal. "We are not speaking about the future, we are speaking now," he said.

Zahar argued that Israel has no true intention of accepting a Palestinian state, despite international agreements including the Road Map for Middle East peace.

Until Israel says what its final borders will be, Hamas will not say whether it will ever recognize Israel, Zahar said. "If Israel is ready to tell the people what is the official border, after that we are going to answer this question."

Asked whether Hamas would renounce terrorism, Zahar argued that the definition of terrorism is unfair.

Israel is "killing people and children and removing our agricultural system - this is terrorism," he said. "When the Americans [are] attacking the Arabic and Islamic world whether in Afghanistan and Iraq and they are playing a dirty game in Lebanon, this is terrorism." He described Hamas as a "liberating movement."


Hamas will not oppose Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas if the latter decides to negotiate with Israel, the deputy head of Hamas' political bureau, Musa Abu-Marzouk, said Sunday.

In an interview with Fatah-affiliated Al-Hakayik, Abu-Marzouk said, "Abu Mazen [Abbas] and Yasser Arafat negotiated with Israel and Hamas opposed it without coming into conflict with them. Hamas will deal with the results of the Oslo Accords exactly as the Arabs dealt with the borders drawn in the Middle East by British and French imperialism."

Abu-Marzouk, who is considered a moderate, added "we do not want a war with Abu Mazen. The rejection of the idea of negotiations [with Israel] was Hamas' previous stand and in my opinion we can reach an agreed-on formula with Abu Mazen regarding all the sensitive issues we disagree on."

Abu-Marzouk added that he believes Hamas did not face international ostracizing following the elections, and "will not change its principles. The Palestinian Authority has made many good pledges and many bad ones and there is no place in this matter for categorical statements. We are not dealing with history and we are looking toward the future."

In the interview in Al-Hakayik, whose editor is Bilal al-Hassan, a veteran Fatah activist and the nephew of the organization's Central Committee member Hani al-Hassan, Abu-Marzouk tried to diffuse the tension between the two organizations.

He conceded that the extent of the Hamas win had been a cause for "confusion" among its leaders but added "the confusion of other factors connected to the Palestinian problem was greater."

He said Hamas was now holding talks on the formation of the cabinet and that the issues would be clarified in "a number of days to two weeks."

"Being that the Palestinian system of government is a presidential regime," he said, "Abu Mazen has supreme responsibility for the process of forming the cabinet based on his position, while Hamas will be responsible for ministerial appointments and the functioning of the cabinet."

According to Abu-Marzouk, Hamas will seek a national unity government, but has not yet decided whether to fill the positions of prime minister and speaker of the parliament, or whether a cabinet of technocrats will be formed of individuals from outside of Hamas.

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