Wednesday, February 28, 2007

What a difference a day makes for Hamas

Russia's foreign minister said on Tuesday the "obvious" progress achieved during recent talks between rival Palestinian movements Fatah and Hamas warranted the lifting of the economic embargo on the Palestinians.

"Progress is obvious... We are convinced that the progress is enough to mitigate the economic restrictions imposed on the Palestinians," the minister, Sergei Lavrov, told a news conference in Moscow.

Lavrov, who earlier held talks with Hamas political leader Khaled Meshaal, said the two sides "identified the aspects most important to paving the way for a settlement of the Middle East conflict," he said.

"The Mecca accord proved that consolidation of all Palestinians was possible. The Mecca accord is a move towards implementing the demands of the Quartet of international mediators," he said. He pledged to continue work on Hamas.

Speaking at a separate news conference, Lavrov said Hamas has pledged to stop missile attacks on Israel.

"Hamas must use all its authority on the Palestinian territories to stop firing Kassam rockets at Israel. We have been assured that such steps will be taken," he was quoted by Interfax news agency as saying.
And today:
Earlier Wednesday, six rockets fell on southern Israel, causing no injuries but damaging a security fence. The rockets came despite promises by Hamas leaders to halt the attacks.

Also today:
Abu Obaida, the spokesman of the Qassam Brigades the armed wing of Hamas Movement, on Wednesday vowed an "earthshaking reprisal" to the Israeli occupation's crimes in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

The spokesman affirmed that the Palestinian people never accepted "oppression", and stressed that the Palestinian resistance would "teach the enemy a bitter lesson".

He said that IOF practices in Nablus and Jenin, the murder, siege of hospitals, arrests, closure of schools, terrorizing and starving civilians were part of the "Zionist terrorism against the Palestinian people" that would entail devastation on the "Zionists themselves".

He charged that Israel wants to drench the Palestinian arena in a pool of blood and to create chaos in a bid to hamper the implementation of the Makkah agreement that brought calm back to that arena.
I wonder if Lavrov has withdrawn his recommendation to fund these lovely people yet.

One valuable lesson that Palestinian Arabs have learned very well: while lies repeated often enough do indeed become thought of as the truth, you only have to lie once to people who want to believe your lies.