The Palestinians should not depend on Iran to play a better role than Egypt as a mediator in Palestinian reconciliation, a Hamas official said Saturday.
“Because of geographic proximity and because of the new regime, it is easier that Egypt plays the role of mediator,” undersecretary of the ministry of foreign affairs in Gaza Ghazi Hamad told Ma’an.
Hamad urged the Palestinians to take national interests into account when they deal with Iran, speaking a day after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stressed his commitment to reconciliation.
Ahmedinejad told President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday that “we are committed to achieve Palestinian national reconciliation as it will contribute to the Palestinian resistance.”
He asked Abbas, who leads Fatah, and other parties, to discuss reconciliation in Iran.
In Gaza, the Hamas official agreed that Iran, despite its political and national influence, is controversial when it comes to Palestinian relations. He pointed out that Hamas’ relations with Iran witnessed level of estrangement at certain stages.
Asked whether the recent affinity between Iran and the PLO could harm Hamas’ interests, Hamad said relations with Iran should “not viewed in terms of rivalry, but rather in terms of Palestinian national interests.”
Hamad added that he would support good relations with any party if that is in the interest of the Palestinian cause. Rivalry and disagreement between the Palestinians, he said, resulted in splits in the Arab and Islamic countries’ attitude to the Palestinians.
“Ending the state of disagreement will strengthen the Palestinians’ ability to make use of the Arab Spring, and to recruit Arab and Islamic support to the Palestinian cause instead of getting into endless competitions.”
The Hamas official asserted that his movement was not subordinate to Iran.
“I confirm that Hamas follows a firm policy, and will never be subordinate or marginal. Having strong relations with some sides never means that Hamas is under control of some countries.”
As proof, Hamad highlighted that Hamas used to have strong strategic relations with Syria, but after the turmoil in the country, “Hamas announced certain attitudes which prove that Hamas isn’t under anybody’s control.”
“Hamas views Iran as an Islamic country which supports the Palestinian cause, and we will be in favor of Iran as long as that support continues.”