Hamas Prime Minister In Turkey For Visit With Erdogan


Hamas media is reporting on Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh’s visit to Turkey for meetings with the Turkish Prime Minister during which he expressed his “gratitude to the Turkish people for their support for Palestine. ” According to an Alresalah report:

Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, who is on a visit to Turkey as part of an official tour of the Muslim world, has said he came to Turkey to deliver his gratitude to the Turkish government and people for their support for Palestine. In an interview with the Anatolia news agency on Monday, Haniyeh said Turkey played a major role in a recent prisoner exchange between Hamas and Israel and a recent agreement between Hamas and Fatah. He said Palestinians appreciate Turkey’s support in many fields. Haniyeh met with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdo?an at the prime minister’s Istanbul home on Sunday. During the meeting, Erdo?an expressed hope that the Palestinians “attain an all-encompassing umbrella organization with strong democratic representation  powers,” Haniyeh said they discussed many significant issues related to Palestine, adding that he received a “much warmer welcome than that of a friend or brother” from Erdo?an. Haniyeh added that the Palestinian people owe much to “the martyrs” of the Freedom Flotilla, the flotilla of six aid vessels headed for the Gaza Strip that was subjected to a deadly raid by the Israeli military on May 31st, 2010, and that the Mavi Marmara, which was also part of the flotilla and aboard which eight Turks and a Turkish-American were killed in the Israeli raid, contributed much to the Palestinian cause. The Palestinian premier paid a visit to the Humanitarian Aid Foundation (?HH), one of the organizers of the flotilla, which owned the Mavi Marmara, on Monday. He held a press conference with ?HH Chairman Bülent Y?ld?r?m and also visited the Mavi Marmara, which is now docked in Istanbul. On the Istanbul dock, Haniyeh denounced the Israeli blockade of Gaza.

The Hamas charter states that it is ” is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine” and an early media report indicated that shortly after Hamas took over the Gaza strip, Muslim Brotherhood representatives were present to review Hamas military formations. In 2007,  a Hamas journalist acknowledged the role that the “international Muslim Brotherhood” has played in providing funds for the purchase of weapons and in 2008, an Israeli TV station reported that Muslim Brotherhood “representatives” had traveled to Gaza from Egypt through the open border to meet with Hamas. 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 2008-2009 conflict with Israel. Anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli incitement in Hamas media is commonly reported.

The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) has published a report titled “Turkey, the Global Muslim Brotherhood, and the Gaza Flotilla” whose abstract states:

There is strong evidence for Turkish governmental involvement in the Gaza flotilla incident, with Turkish government support channeled through the Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood. The IHH was not acting alone but rather was an integral part of a Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network.

With respect to the Global Muslim Brotherhood, report’s second conclusion states:

The Gaza flotilla incident brought into sharp focus an even more significant long- term development: the growing relationship between the Erdogan government and the Global Muslim Brotherhood, which has given rise to some of the most notorious Islamist terrorist groups – from al-Qaeda to Hamas. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood, while the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip acted as the main axis for this activity.

Read the rest here.

Previous posts have reported on other aspects of Haniyeh’s first trip outside of the Gaza Strip including a visit to the headquarters of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood.

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