Will he run or not? Mashaal
Photo: AFP

'Mashaal will stay on as Hamas politburo chief'

Day after terror group says Mashaal won't seek reelection, Palestinian source says Shura Council denied his request to withdraw from race

A Damascus-based Palestinian source claimed that Khaled Mashaal will definitely continue to serve as Hamas' politburo chief despite the official statement which said he will not run for the position in the June elections, Ynet learned Sunday.


The source told the London-based Arabic newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat that members of Hamas' Shura Council, who convened in Khartoum three weeks ago, refused Mashaal's request to withdraw from the race. He is slated to be the only candidate.


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During the meeting of the top-level body in Hamas that elects its leadership, Mashaal, who is based in Damascus, presented a report focusing on the terror group's future. The source said that towards the end of the meeting Mashaal asked the council to accept his decision not to run for another term as politburo chief.


On Saturday Hamas announced that Mashaal (56) won't seek re-election.


In a statement from Hamas' official e-mail account, the Palestinian group urged him to reconsider his decision, saying the issue of who leads the decades-old terrorist movement should be left to Hamas. The group said the decision shouldn't be made by one person — even its leader.


According to Palestinian sources, Hamas Prime Minister in Gaza Ismail Haniyeh is considering to present his candidacy for politburo chief, as is Mahaal's deputy, Moussa Abu Marzouk.


According to London-based newspaper Al-Hayat, Abu Marzouk is backed by a number of Hamas leaders, including Mahmoud al-Zahar. The paper detailed the differences of opinion between Zahar and Haniyeh.


Meanwhile, Mashaa'ls brother-in-law denied reports that Syrian security forces have arrested the politburo chief's daughter on suspicion of corruption.


According to Al-Hayat, Ibrahim Shaqaqi, the son of Islamic Jihad founder Fathi Shaqaqi, was released from custody a day after he was detained during a student rally in Syria.




פרסום ראשון: 01.22.12, 09:54
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