Published: Mon, May 08, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

Hamas says Ismail Haniyeh chosen as Islamic group's leader

Hamas says Ismail Haniyeh chosen as Islamic group's leader

Hamas's former chief in Gaza, Ismail Haniya, has been elected overall head of the Palestinian Islamist group, succeeding Khaled Meshaal, its official media announced today.

In Gaza, where Haniyeh still resides in his home in a refugee camp, some residents saw his election as a sign that could draw attention to the territory's woes.

The near suffocation of Gaza, not only by Israel but also by most of the global community, has a lot to do with Hamas' final realisation that its stance is a non-starter. It rejected, however, ever recognizing Israel.

Haniya is a onetime Palestinian prime minister based in Gaza - which the group has controlled for 10 years.

The leadership change comes as the Islamist group looks to reconcile with Palestinian rivals.

Labeled a terrorist organization by the West and Israel, Hamas said it would continue armed resistance as a legitimate right.

Meshaal has been Hamas political chief since 1996.

Top casino themed films
As a result, he seems to acquire some “lady luck” which puts the brakes on his ability to spoil the games of others. The success of Ocean’s 11 has led to the development of a new spin-off, Oceans 8 which is due to be released in 2018.

In January 2006, the Islamic list which Haniya chaired won the parliamentary elections, after which Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas nominated him as the Palestinian unity government's first prime minister.

That government was short-lived, in part because Hamas refused, then as now, to fulfill worldwide conditions for recognition, including renouncing violence, recognizing Israel's right to exist, and accepting signed agreements between Israel and the Fatah-dominated Palestine Liberation Organization.

Haniya, Yassin and two other leaders all survived an Israeli assassination attempt in 2003, when Israeli war jets struck a building in Gaza city in which Yassin and other Hamas leaders were holding a secret meeting.

Last year, Avigdor Lieberman, a hard-line Israeli politician, issued a blunt ultimatum to Haniya.

Militant group Hamas controls the Gaza strip, which it took over from Fatah in 2007. The election ended 40 years of political domination by the Fatah party. He added that "this reflects how powerful Hamas movement is".

Israel, along with Egypt, has been enforcing a crippling border blockade against them since then.

Haniyeh will assume the head role in the wake of Hamas recently updating its 1988 founding charter which softened its stance on Israel.

Like this: