According to the Shin Bet security agency, the "exposure of this infrastructure illustrates Hamas
operatives' constant motivation to step up Hamas
terrorist activity in the West Bank.
relied on the tunnels to circumvent the blockade before Egypt created its own buffer zone in 2014.
Al-Khateeb stated that Islamist movements all over the world are ideologically affiliated with the ideology of the Brotherhood, and "Meshaal didn't lie when saying that Hamas
is organisationally separated from the Brotherhood, because, actually, all the 84 groups of the Brotherhood in 84 countries are independent and separated but ideologically affiliated to it.
Avera Mengistu's fate poses a potential threat to negotiations, as his whereabouts remain unknown with Hamas
claiming he was released months ago.
He noted that Hamas
was trying to improve its relations with Iran, and said, "Hamas
has age-old relations with Iran and we want to have constant bilateral ties with Tehran.
Cairo has for many years played a central role in engineering ceasefires between Israel and Hamas
, which dominates the Gaza Strip, including a truce reached between the sides in August that ended a 50-day Gaza war.
Israel's policy, in the infamous words of longtime Israeli official Dov Weisglass, was "to put the Palestinians on a diet, but not to make them die of hunger" as long as Hamas
ruled the strip.
The blockade that Israel and Egypt maintain against Hamas
is for security reasons, and is justified by the discovery that Hamas
' complex network of underground tunnels was built by diverting millions of dollars of construction materials that were supposed to be used for civilian infrastructure.
is also enforcing its control over the Palestinians of Gaza.
In the past, Hamas
members had been critical of Assad for his violent suppression of the uprising, but the organization had never taken any role in the fighting.
Palestinian observers had expected that an end of Iranian financial aid to Hamas
would facilitate a healing of the internal rift between the two rivals, Fatah and Hamas
After the European Union largely aligned itself with Israel's right to respond to rocket attacks from the Hamas
-controlled Gaza Strip during November's Pillar of Defense operation, the status of Hamas
as an anti-peace political pariah among a majority of Western liberal democracies is still intact, although the terrorist organization continues to crave political legitimacy.