Incoming Palestinian Prime Minister: Hamas wants to end fight with Israel
Making an appeal to Israelis ahead of Tuesday's elections, incoming Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Sunday that his movement wanted to end the fight with Israel. "We don't seek a whirlpool of blood in this region," Haniyeh said, according to the AP. "We want rights and dignity for this [Palestinian] people, and to put an end to this decades-long complicated situation."
Haniyeh added. "The presence of Hamas in the power is the beginning of resolving the crisis, if they want to."
Regarding the Israeli election, the Hamas leader said the intention of the leading Kadima Party of Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to withdraw from parts of the West Bank without agreement from the Palestinians is unacceptable. "We will not hang onto the tails of the occupation," Haniyeh stated. "But this doesn't mean that we consider the borders they decide on to be those of the Palestinian state."
Hamas was elected "on the principle of defending the legitimacy of resistance against the Israeli occupation," Haniyeh said.
Asked if Hamas would hold talks with Israel, Haniyeh said the decision was out of his hands. "The problem is with Olmert, with Kadima. He said he will not have any contacts with the Palestinian government. He announced a position. The problem is not with us," he said.