Negotiations for a unified government in the Palestinian Authority halted, the West enforced a financial siege, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas threatened to dismantle the government and parliament.
Still, Hamas already prepared itself for another possible round against the IDF, and was determined to stay in power without acknowledging Israel.
“Hamas wants a unified government, but if that doesn’t happen, we are prepared to stay in power according to the mandate given us by the people,” Deputy Palestinian Parliament Chairman Ahmed Bahar told Ynet.
He continued, “No one will make us disappear, we will stay, as part of a unified government or on our own. That’s what we were voted into power for, and Abu Mazen (Abbas) doesn’t have the authority to dismantle the elected institutions.”
The international community placed three main demands on Hamas to serve as conditions for an end to its boycott and resumed talks with the Palestinians. The first was to denounce terror, the second to acknowledge Israel, and the last was to honor past agreements with Israel. Hamas has not yet complied with any of the conditions.
When asked what he thought of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s opinion that the current crisis would best be solved with early elections, Bahar replied that there was no need for early elections.
“Elections now would mean civil war. A unified government, based on the prisoner’s document, is what is needed,” he said.
Bahar mentioned talks by an international committee in Sharm-el-Sheikh in 1996, which he said plotted against Hamas and the resistance. “That scheme failed. All of these pressures won’t work this time either. The Palestinian people will not surrender, and we will not acknowledge Israel,” Bahar said.
When asked to comment on the fact that the world would not acknowledge a country that did not acknowledge Israel, Bahar said that it was unfair of the world to dictate what the Palestinian people did.
“Any government to be established, be it a unified government, a technocratic government, or any other government, what worth would it have if it depended on dictations? What sovereignty could it claim?” Bahar concluded.