(September 21, 2022 / JNS) Ismail Haniyeh, the head of Hamas’s political bureau, his deputy Saleh al-Arouri and bureau members Moussa Abu Marzouq and Maher Salah paid an official visit to Moscow last week at the invitation of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
The Hamas men met with several Russian officials, including Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his deputy Mikhail Bogdanov. The delegation members emphasized their support for Moscow’s positions on several issues, while Russian officials expressed their support for Hamas, according to a report by MEMRI.
Russia has not classified Hamas as a terrorist group, and officials in the foreign ministry, such as Bogdanov, continue to maintain contact with the movement. In fact, this is not the first time a high-level Hamas delegation has visited Russia; Lavrov also met with Haniyeh in Moscow in 2020.
Bogdanov, a former ambassador to Israel and to Egypt, is also the special representative of the president of Russia for the Middle East and deputy chairman of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society
Since Russia invaded Ukraine last February, Hamas officials have repeatedly asserted that the war and global events signal that the United States is losing its “hegemonial” status and that the multipolar world order that is taking shape will aid the Palestinian cause, noted the report.
Hamas issued a statement saying that its delegation stressed to Russian officials the Palestinians’ right to “resist the occupation by every possible means, until liberation and return [are achieved].”
They also emphasized the Palestinian people’s right to all its natural resources, “especially the natural gas,” an allusion to the gas field off the Gaza shore. The Hamas delegation decried “the robbing of the Palestinian and Lebanese resources by the [Israeli] enemy.”
Jewish News Syndicate
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