Hamas insists ties with Iran strong, despite regional polarization

Al Monitor| Adnan Abu Amer: Hamas’ representative in Iran, Khaled al-Qaddumi, tells Al-Monitor that progress has recently been made toward further developing relations between his movement and Tehran, as the latter continues to provide financial and military support to Hamas. However, he denied that there have been demands by any Arab countries for Hamas to cut ties with Iran, and stressed that no mediation efforts have been attempted by Iran to reconcile Hamas with the Syrian regime.

In a phone interview from Tehran, Qaddumi said that for the past few years he has been involved in Hamas’ Islamic and international relations, including dealing with some Western and southwestern Asian countries he did not name, taking part in Hamas’ delegations to Asian, African and European countries.

Qaddumi, who has been the head of Hamas’ office in Tehran since 2011, said, “Hamas’ internal elections are expected to have a positive result on the party’s relations with Iran,” adding that meetings are regularly held between the two outside Iran, with Hamas maintaining contact with many Iranian official bodies such as the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), the Foreign Ministry and the office of the supreme leader.

The text of the interview follows:

Al-Monitor:  How would you summarize Hamas-Iran relations up until early 2017, after years of ups and downs and in the aftermath of the Arab revolutions starting in 2011?

Qaddumi:  The beginning of 2017 has ushered in a new era for Hamas-Iran relations that can be described as positive and forward-looking away from past complications, especially since Hamas does not interfere with the internal affairs of Islamic countries.

 

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