< HOME  Thursday, March 02, 2006

the sensory WALL is crumbling

They can physically block Palestinians from the world with their concrete wall; but the sensory wall they've erected is crumbling.
South Africa on Thursday joined a growing list of countries inviting Hamas leaders for talks, raising Israeli concerns that the international front against the Islamic militants is crumbling.

Israel has been trying to isolate Hamas to counter the effect of its imminent rise to power in the neighboring Palestinian territories. Israel's efforts absorbed a blow when Russia invited Hamas leaders for talks, due to begin Friday.

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On Thursday, another crack appeared in the facade. Hamas said South Africa has invited its leaders for talks, though it said no date had been set. The South African Foreign Ministry confirmed the invitation . . . The invitation to Moscow was followed by talks between Hamas and the Turkish foreign minister, Abdullah Gul, and an invitation from Venezuela.

Also, Hamas leaders have been consulting the Iranian president and spiritual leader, hoping for financial support to make up for the funds Israel is holding up - with the prospect of financial sanctions by the Western world looming when a Hamas Cabinet is sworn in. Hamas is based in Syria.

While refusing to meet Hamas officials, the European Union decided to send $143 million in emergency aid to the Palestinian Authority. The EU pledged to reconsider its position when a Hamas Cabinet takes office, probably this month.

Israel criticized the South African invitation.

"We would be concerned that giving legitimacy to an unreformed Hamas could stifle the possibility that the movement will transform itself from a terrorist organization to a political party," Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev said.

In Washington, the State Department's deputy spokesman, Adam Ereli, supported the Israeli view. "The United States is not going to meet with a terror group," he said. Other countries are free to make their own decisions, he said, but they should make clear to Hamas its actions are unacceptable.
Whether or not Israelis approve, the world will come to know the true nature of this occupation.

[photo: incoming Palestinian Prime Minister and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh]


At Thursday, March 02, 2006, Blogger Left of Center said...

I saw a brief interview with Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh. I really wish we would try to work with him. Conditions will never improve if we continue to demonise Hamas's political wing. During the interview he promised to move to open channels with Isreal. This small thing holds more promise than big agreements with Abbas, as he holds no real power.

At Thursday, March 02, 2006, Blogger qrswave said...

can you get a hold of the transcript?

At Thursday, March 02, 2006, Blogger Left of Center said...

The interview was on cnn. I'll see if I can find one. He doesn't speak English so it would be translated.


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