New Hamas chief backs hunger-striking prisoners

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas elected ex-Gaza Strip chief Ismail Haniya as its new leader on Saturday, days after revising its founding charter to ease its stance on Israel.

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories: Ismail Haniya's election as Hamas chief is another sign that the Islamist movement is seeking to soften its image and show it can offer a viable alternative to Mahmud Abbas, analysts said.

Haniya was appointed Prime Minister after the movement won the 2007 Palestinian elections beating rival Fatah.

Recently, United States President Donald Trump has vowed to revive the stalled Israel-Palestine peace process by acting as a "mediator, an arbitrator or a facilitator". Led by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah in recent weeks has been pushing the group to make significant concessions in Gaza. That prompted direct Israeli reaction in the form of lethal airstrikes on Gaza, and the assassination of political and military leaders of Hamas, including its founder Ahmad Yassin.

Many Western countries classify Hamas as a terrorist group over its failure to renounce violence, recognise Israel's right to exist and accept existing interim Israeli-Palestinian peace agreements.

Chania became Chairman of the Hamas political Bureau, replacing in this post, Khaled Mashaal, who led the radicals in 1996.

Yahya Sinwar, a top commander in Hamas's armed wing, was named the movement's leader in the Gaza Strip in February. Egypt controls the only non-Israeli land crossing to Gaza, and its opening is vital for the livelihood of nearly 2 million stranded Gazans.

U.S. rig count up eight this week, Utah the same
Oil rigs are up 394 in the past year, while natural gas rigs have risen by 85 and miscellaneous rigs are level. That brought the nation's fleet of oil rigs up to 712, up from an all-time low of 316 almost a year ago.

Haniyeh, he expects, will be "more flexible on different aspects, maybe foremost is the reconciliation, though I don't see a near end to divisions given the wide gap between the positions of Hamas and Fatah".

Israel, along with Egypt, has been enforcing a crippling border blockade against them since then. Also, the new document rejects the Oslo Accords, under which the Palestine Liberation Organization recognized the right of Israel to exist.

Last week, Hamas unveiled a series of additions to its charter that expressed support for establishing a provisional Palestinian state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip - seen as a tacit acceptance of Israel. Instead, Palestinians under the rule of Hamas in Gaza have suffered oppression, hardship, war and deprivation.

Israel has not yet commented on Haniyeh's appointment.

He also described the Oslo Accords as "not only a fundamental compromise of Palestinian rights to the occupation, but were also a source of major division in the Palestinian arena over both means and objectives, transferring the conflict into the Palestinian domestic scene".

The CNN report Netanyahu referenced said, "Hamas says it accepts '67 borders, but doesn't recognize Israel".

Recommended News

  • F1 Russian GP: Wolff: Bottas, Hamilton relationship won't go like Rosberg

    While Vettel stayed out for a long time, Raikkonen pitted first and came back out on track to start posting some excellent times. Eventually he pulled away, got past the Felipe Massa, who he lapped, and headed straight for the chequered flag.
    Children aboard St. Louis school bus avoid serious injury, police say

    Children aboard St. Louis school bus avoid serious injury, police say

    Kirkwood Chief Jim Silvernail says that twelve of the children were at the side of the highway when they arrived on the scene. The drivers of the white truck and the red vehicle involved in the initial accident were not injured.

    Man United survive nervy finish to advance to Europa League final

    Still Celta pushed forwards and they drew level in the 85th minute as Roncaglia's header sent the visiting sky blue hordes wild. Ajax also almost squandered a first-leg lead, losing 3-1 to Lyon in France to go through 5-4 on aggregate.
  • Georgia Interstate Bridge Closed After Fire to Re-Open Ahead of Schedule

    Georgia Interstate Bridge Closed After Fire to Re-Open Ahead of Schedule

    McMurry said inspectors had been on the fix site daily to insure the road was safe and receiving the highest level of inspection. The damaged section of the interstate, which runs through downtown, usually sees about 243,000 vehicles a day .

    Is North Korea targeting a Pyongyang university for elites?

    Another US citizen has been detained in North Korea for suspected hostile acts against Pyongyang, authorities said on Sunday. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has urged other Asian nations to pressure North Korea to dismantle its programs as well.
    After weeks of fuming, how Trump fired Comey

    After weeks of fuming, how Trump fired Comey

    That has led to speculation that Trump is considering replacing him. "We had a very nice dinner at the White House very early on". In this image provided by NBC News, President Donald Trump is interviewed by NBC's Lester Holt, Thursday, May 11, 2017.
  • Favored Always Dreaming Wins 2017 Kentucky Derby

    Favored Always Dreaming Wins 2017 Kentucky Derby

    Always Dreaming wins the 143rd Kentucky Derby! Anthony Bonomo is the owner of Always Dreaming , and Todd Pletcher is the trainer. Lookin At Lee returned $26.60 and $15.20 with Battle of Midway returning $20.80 to show.

    Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2: An 80s-Style Trailer

    Marvel Studios' Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is in cinemas now. For more on the film you can read Haleigh Foutch's review. However, James Gunn won't be doing it alone.

    Microsoft to offer 3 flavors of Linux in the Windows Store

    What's really wild is that you'll be able to pick up any of these three distributions directly through the Windows Store. Users will first have to enter Developer Mode on their Windows 10 machine and enable Linux support.
  • Caitlyn Jenner Speaks About Gender Confirmation Surgery

    Caitlyn Jenner Speaks About Gender Confirmation Surgery

    However, many viewers were critical of host Eamonn Holmes, who they thought was unusually uncomfortable around Jenner . Reality TV star Caitlyn Jenner says she is considering entering U.S. politics in a bid to promote transgender issues.
    US defense chief affirms commitment to protecting Turkey

    US defense chief affirms commitment to protecting Turkey

    The offensive has been supported by bombing raids by a US-led coalition, as well as coalition military advisers on the ground. The Pentagon said only that Mr Mattis "reiterated USA commitment to our North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally".
    News guide for Trump-Russia probe focusing on ousted Flynn

    News guide for Trump-Russia probe focusing on ousted Flynn

    Trump made no mention of the fact that Flynn had been fired from his high position by the Obama administration in 2014. But inside the White House, the McMaster pick has not gone over well with the one man who matters most.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.