Hamas chief: US may recognize Israel as ‘Jewish state’

Press TV – The politburo chief of the Palestinian Islamic resistance movement, Hamas, says he has obtained confidential information that Washington may take new decisions regarding Jerusalem al-Quds and the Palestinian cause.

“We have information that the US administration may recognize Israel as a Jewish state, annex settlements and abolish the Palestinian right to return,” Ismail Haniyeh said at a local convention in Gaza City on Saturday.

The Hamas chief also said it was necessary to step up protests against Israel.

He called on the Palestinian Authority to review its policies and adopt a clear stance against the United States and Israel.

“The Palestinian Authority is requested to take a clear position regarding the [so-called] Oslo peace accords and security coordination with Israel,” Haniyeh said.

The Hamas leader added that all prior agreements, such as the 1993 Oslo accords, should be declared null and void after Washington’s decision on Jerusalem al-Quds as well as its plan to relocate its embassy to the city.

He further noted that al-Quds would remain the capital of Palestine, adding, “Every step taken by the Israeli occupation is invalid.”

Palestinian protesters carry a wounded comrade during clashes with Israeli forces near the border fence east of Gaza City on December 22, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Meanwhile, clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces continued in another day of rage across the occupied Palestinian territories.

The Palestinian Health Ministry reported that a Palestinian man had succumbed to his wounds sustained in clashes with Israeli forces along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel last week.

The ministry identified the victim as 28-year-old Sharif al-Abd Shalash from Jabalia refugee camp, located 3 kilometers north of Jabalia.

Separately, hundreds of Palestinians took part in the funeral procession of Mohammed Nabeel Mohaisen, 26, who was also killed by live gunshots during scuffles between dozens of youths and Israeli forces east of Gaza on Friday.

On December 6, US President Donald Trump announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital and relocate the US embassy in occupied territories from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.

The dramatic shift in Washington’s policy vis-à-vis the city triggered demonstrations in the occupied Palestinian territories, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, Morocco and other Muslim countries.

The voting results are displayed on the floor of the United Nations General Assembly in which the US declaration of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital was declared “null and void” on December 21, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by AFP)

On Thursday, the United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of a resolution that calls on the US to withdraw its controversial recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israeli “capital.”

In an attempt to avert the resolution, Trump had warned that “we’re watching,” threatening reprisals against countries that back the measure, which earlier faced a US veto at the UN Security Council.

Israel, however, rejected the world body’s resolution while thanking Trump for his decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds.

Jerusalem al-Quds remains at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with Palestinians hoping that the eastern part of the city would eventually serve as the capital of a future independent Palestinian state.