An Egyptian newspaper has reported that he head of the Hamas government in Gaza has congratulated and pledged support to the new head of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. According to a report in Al-Masry Al-Youm:
Ismail Haniyeh, head of the Hamas government in Gaza, called newly-appointed Muslim Brotherhood (MB) General Guide Mohamed Badie Thursday to pledge the Palestinian resistance group’s support. In an official statement, Haniyeh wished Badie “all the best,” calling for the MB’s continued support for Hamas and the besieged people of the Gaza Strip. Haniyeh also called Mahdi Akef, Badie’s predecessor, thanking him for the support given to Hamas during the latter’s term as MB general guide. According to leading MB member Essam el-Erian, the Palestinian question remains a “strategic concern” for the group. “Our relations with Palestine date back to the 1936 Al-Qassam revolution, before the formation of any Palestinian factions,” said el-Erian. “In the days of [former Palestinian leader Yasser]Arafat, we used to roll out the red carpet when he would visit our general guide in Cairo.” In a related development, Badie–in his first official act as general guide–appointed Guidance Bureau member Mahmoud Hussein as group secretary-general, replacing Mahmoud Ezzat.
Previous posts have discussed the election and background of Mr. Badie who is known for his strong association with radical ideologue Sayyid Qutb.
The Hamas charter states that it is ” is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine” and an Israeli TV station has reported that in 2008, Muslim Brotherhood “representatives” traveled to Gaza from Egypt through the open border to meet with Hamas. An earlier media report indicated that shortly after Hamas took over the Gaza strip, Muslim Brotherhood representatives were present to review Hamas military formations. Last June, a Hamas journalist acknowledged the role that the “international Muslim Brotherhood” has played in providing funds for the purchase of weapons. Hamas is supported financially and politically by the global Muslim Brotherhood and a NEFA Foundation report has documented the Hamas fund-raising activities of the Union of Good, a coalition of Islamic charities linked to the Brotherhood that provides financial support to both the Hamas “social” infrastructure, as well as its terrorist activities. Previous posts have also discussed the worldwide campaign orchestrated by the global Brotherhood against Israeli actions in Gaza during the recent conflict. An earlier post reported a statement by the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood claiming that Hamas was “an independent entity”