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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Hamas claiming some Egyptian land

Palestine Press Agency reports of a TV interview with Hamas advisor Amhad Yousef.

Yousef is saying that some 13,000 acres of Egyptian territory are really "Palestinian" and he wants an open border with Arab countries: (autotranslated)
Ahmed Yousef, political adviser to Prime Minister Ismail Haniya, called for the "demolition and removal of the border between Palestinian Rafah and the Egyptian territory and the seizure of thousands of acres built on the border" claiming that the ownership back to the Palestinians.

Youssef claimed in an interview with the Arab channel tonight that "Hamas' destruction of the wall was intended to restore to the Palestinians their land allegedly taken to build a border wall is about 13 thousand acres" and said: "We do not want the continuation of the wall because we do not prefer the existence of any wall between us and deepened Arab" as he said.

Yousef described the demolition of the border as a first stage of what he called the third intifada, pointing out that the second stage will be moves towards crossing "Beit Hanoun" Erez north of the Gaza Strip.

In response to a question that by Hamas refusing European presence on the Rafah crossing the Palestinians could lose financial support from the EU, which is in a new Europe based on the formulation in support of the Palestinians and the construction of infrastructure and development plans, in the long run Yousef replied: "Europeans at the crossing were always part of the problem," suggesting that his movement does not want the Europeans' financial support, saying: "There are Arab parties prepared to offer assistance to us and we heard news of these reassuring Arab parties."
This should go over well in Egypt.

UPDATE: From JPost:
The Egyptians have also foiled an attempt by Hamas members to raise Palestinian and Hamas flags on top of several government institutions in Sinai's Rafah and el-Arish.

The semi-official Al-Ahram newspaper reported that the attempt to place the flags was seen as a serious "provocation" by many Egyptians.

Hassan Issa, a member of the Egyptian parliament, accused Hamas of jeopardizing his country's security. "Hamas has violated our sovereignty and this is totally unacceptable," he said. "This move poses a real threat to Egypt's national security."

Arab diplomats in Cairo estimated that around 10,000 Palestinians were still in Sinai, six days after the barrier separating the Gaza Strip from Egypt was destroyed.

One diplomat told the Post that Hamas supporters were trying to create the impression that they had succeeded in "liberating" Egyptian territory.

"The Hamas people apparently forgot that they had invaded Egypt, and not Israel," he said. "The Egyptians are running out patience."