Hamas to open legislative offices across Arab world

Published September 29th, 2009 - 01:57 GMT

As part of an effort to improve its image and avoid travel restrictions imposed by Israel, Hamas is considering opening branches for the Palestinian parliament across the Arab world, Xinhua reports.


Hamas’ leadership told the Chinese news agency that the idea remains in discussion stages, but sources have confirmed that Hamas lawmaker Marwan Abu Rass arrived in Damascus this week to organize the opening of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC)’s first branch outside of Palestinian territories.


“The Change and Reform parliamentary bloc of Hamas is thinking seriously of opening a regular office in the Syrian capital,” Ismail al-Ashqar, a Hamas legislator, told Xinhua.


“Such a step would help break the siege on the bloc's members,” he added. Ahmed Bahar, depouty speaker of the PLC, told reporters in Gaza, “At the beginning, the branches will be in Syria and Egypt before spreading out to all Arab capitals.”


“The aim is to communicate with the world and the Arab parliaments, given the tight blockade of Gaza.”

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