Press release on Hamas 31st Anniversary

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On this day before 31 years, Hamas movement inaugurated a journey of freedom struggle against the Israeli occupation. Throughout this journey, the movement has made enormous sacrifices in order to fulfil the aspirations of the Palestinian people: FREEDOM, INDEPENDENCE, and RETURN.

Throughout its life, Hamas movement has faced huge challenges and serious attempts to suppress, beleaguer, and break the movement. However, the movement has succeeded to build up its structure, enhance its capabilities, and put forward a clear political vision. Hamas has steered its compass onto Palestine, neutralizing all internal conflicts and minor issues. Indeed, the movement has made resisting the Israeli occupation its sole objective, utilizing all the capabilities of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territories or in the diaspora to serve the national project of the Palestinians.

Hamas has stood steadfast against all the Zionist schemes aiming to liquidate the Palestinian issue. Furthermore, it has fought off the US projects represented by the “Deal of the Century” that poses serious and strategic threats to the Palestinian cause and the regional interests. The US-adopted project was planned to legitimize the Israeli occupation at the expense of the national rights and interests of the Palestinian people. The first phase of the ‘Deal of the Century’ has been seen on the ground when the US recognised Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Palestine, as the Israeli occupation’s capital and then moved its embassy into the holy city. Furthermore, the US has endeavoured to dismantle UNRWA and hence to abolish the right of the Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland and compensation for their forcible displacement.

Hamas retains the right to resist the Israeli occupation with all means possible, as per the international law. In addition, the Palestinians’ right over their eternal capital, Jerusalem, and the right of the Palestinian refugees to return to their homelands are national, consensual constants. Therefore, the forgoing rights are never subject to neither negotiation nor bargaining.

Since its inception, Hamas movement has adopted a clear and comprehensive vision highlighted in its Document of General Principles issued in 2017. Hamas’ vision is based on liberating Palestine, declaring the sovereign Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, and freeing the Palestinian detainees held in the Israeli jails.  After this, the movement seeks to build up a civilized society that adopts and promotes freedom, justice, democracy, civil peace, women rights, vulnerable groups’ protection, equality, unity, openness, and peace.

Hamas has enhanced its ties at the Arab, regional, and Islamic levels to support the Palestinian issue. Moreover, the movement has distanced itself from the ‘polar policy’ while preserved its national constants derived from its profound belief in the just cause of the Palestinian people and their right to self-determination.

Regarding the Palestinian split, Hamas has done its best to end the Palestinian division and achieve the national unity. It has made serious concessions for this sake, reflecting the movement’s profound belief that reconciliation is the pillar of any national achievements or gains. Unfortunately, Hamas movement was surprised by the negative and uncooperative stance of Fatah leadership, which has contributed to the failure of all meetings and talks held to achieve reconciliation. Most importantly, the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority has imposed sever punitive measures on the Gaza Strip that drastically deteriorated the humanitarian conditions in the beleaguered enclave. Indeed, Hamas extends its heartfelt thanks to Egypt, Arab countries, and brotherly states for the enormous efforts they had exerted to end the Palestinian rift.

Hamas reiterates that, out of necessity, the Palestinian split has to meet its end immediately. Then, the Palestinian home could be restructured on the basis of national partnership and a consensual, national vision preserving all the national constants could be endorsed by all the Palestinian groups. Moreover, Hamas movement stresses that the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) has to be reformed.

We call on Fatah leadership to extend their hands to the Egyptian endeavours to achieve the national unity. Hamas urges upon Fatah a precise and honest implementation of all the provisions included in the previously signed reconciliation agreements.

The Israeli suppressive measures in Jerusalem and the West Bank are still ongoing. The occupation has never stopped its judaization, distortion, settlement projects, storming of A-Aqsa Mosque, murders, arrests, and demolition of the Palestinian homes there. However, the Palestinian people have stood steadfast in face of the Israeli violations and atrocities.

In Gaza, the Great Return March has proved a unique example of the Palestinian popular resistance against the Israeli occupation. The peaceful protests have contributed to enhancing and promoting the principles of collective resistance acts, all the Palestinian people are proud of. Hamas is keen to enhance such openness and joint actions. Moreover, the Joint Operation Room of the Palestinian Resistance Factions is an example of the Palestinian reconciliation, courage, and heroism. From this room, the Palestinian factions fought off the occupation together, compelling it to halt its aggression against the Gaza Strip. Moreover, following the Great Return March and the heroic performance of the resistance while defending their people against the Israeli assaults, the Palestinian people have replaced their cause on top of the region and world’s agenda.

The Palestinian steadfastness and protests against the Israeli aggressions have led to negotiations to re-enforce 2014 ceasefire. Hamas has been keen on making the negotiation inclusive by consulting all the Palestinian groups and factions in order to achieve national gains together, alleviate the dire humanitarian conditions in the Gaza Strip, and remove the PA-imposed arbitrary sanctions on the Gaza Strip without paying ant political price.

The claims made by some parties that the proposed ceasefire agreement is part of the ‘Deal of the Century’ are fake. They are mere misleading fabrications made to keep the Gaza Strip under the suffocating blockade imposed by the Israeli occupation since 2006.

Indeed, Hamas thanks Qatar along with all the Arab, Islamic, and other world countries that have exerted considerable efforts to remove the plight of the Gaza Strip, the crippling siege, and the PA-imposed punitive measures. Furthermore, Hamas thanks all UN mediators who have sought to stop the Israeli offensives on the Gaza Strip.

Normalisation with the Israeli occupation means justifications to its atrocious crimes, Palestinian lands usurpation, Jerusalem judaization, continual settlement projects, and displacement and dispossession of millions of Palestinian refugees residing in the occupied Palestinian territories or in the diaspora. 

Therefore, Hamas reiterates a full rejection of all forms of normalisation with the Israeli occupation, under whatever pretexts that may be adopted. Normalisation is an awful crime and a stab in the back of the Palestinian people.

On this day, we should commemorate the Palestinian national icons who made great sacrifice throughout one century of the Palestinian freedom struggle. Particularly, Hamas honours Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Yaser Arafat, and Fathi Shuqaqi, along with all the Palestinian freedom fighters who were martyred while defending their homeland and just cause.

On Hamas 31st anniversary, the movement would like to stress the following:

  1. Hamas hails the Palestinian people in the West Bank, in the Gaza Strip, in the 1948 occupied territories and in diaspora for standing steadfast in the face of the Israeli occupation and defending Jerusalem and Palestine.
  2. The liberation of Palestine, establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, and return of Palestinian refugees to their homeland will always be part of the resistance movement’s constants.
  3. The factional consensus on a national program is a common ground that could be shared by all the Palestinian factions, as it enhances the chances of success of any national actions to overcome the serious challenges.
  4. We reiterate the Palestinian people’s right to resist the occupation, which is guaranteed under the international conventions and laws. 
  5. Hamas reaffirms the necessity to heal the internal division immediately by enforcing the reconciliation agreements fully and properly and laying down the principles of national partnership on the basis of 2011 Cairo Agreement.
  6. We throw our support behind the Great March of Return until the Palestinian demands, agreed upon by all Palestinian factions, are met.
  7. We reiterate the rejection of the “Deal of the Century” and the necessity to fight off the US-drafted plan with all means possible and at any cost. 
  8. Hamas vehemently rejects normalising ties with the Israeli occupation and calls on the Arab and Islamic governments and peoples, as well as on the organisations, institutions, and groups supporting the Palestinian people’s struggle for freedom, to sever ties with the Israeli occupation. 
  9. The Palestinian people’s right to their eternal capital, Jerusalem, is a national constant not only for the Palestinians but also for the Arab and Islamic nations. The Palestinian people will never waive such right or drop their claim to any inch of the holy city. Moreover, the Israeli measures to judaize Jerusalem and distort its genuine identity are doomed to failure.
  10. The Palestinian refugees’ right to return to their homeland, from which they were forced out, is a natural, individual and collective right, stipulated by the basic principles of human rights and international laws. No one, whether it is a Palestinian, Arab, or international party, can abolish such inalienable right.
  11. Hamas thanks all states supporting the Palestinian rights and standing with the Palestinian people’s right to resist the occupation.
  12. We regret the stance of all states voted in favour of the US draft resolution, which violates the international law and poses a serious threat to the Palestinian people and their rights.
  13. Hamas will honour its promise to free all the Palestinians detained in the Israeli jails.

Hamas Movement

Friday, December 14, 2018