A Hamas Web site has reported that the head of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood has called the arrival of the latest convoy in Gaza to be ” a new page of the Jihad against the occupation of the Palestinian territories.” According to the report carried on an Israeli Web site:
12-06-2012,10:28 Al Qassam website- Gaza- ‘Miles of Smiles 13’ aid convoy crossed Rafah border into Gaza on Sunday evening led by the head of the Jordanian branch of the Muslim brotherhood Sheikh Hammam Saeed.PIC reporter stated that the convoy includes 110 human rights activists most of them are Islamic movements’ leaders and the Arab spring leaders from 17 Arab countries carrying 10 tons of medical supplies to the hospitals in the besieged strip. They were received by Deputy Prime Minister of the Palestinian government in Gaza Mohammad Awadh and several Palestinian MPs and leaders of Hamas movement. During a press conference on the Palestinian side of the border, Sheikh Saeed said that ‘the arrival of the convoy is a new page of the Jihad against the occupation of the Palestinian territories,’ confirming that ‘the occupation is doomed and Palestine will definitely rise again’. For his part, Sheikh Hamza Mansoor, the secretary-general of the Islamic Action Front in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, said that the convoy carries a solidarity message to support the besieged people in Gaza and to demand an end to the unfair siege imposed on them, stating that the convoy’s visit will last for a week during which the Jordanian delegation will meet with Palestinian figures. Dr. Essam Youssef, the convoy’s General Director, said that the convoy included Islamic leaderships and figures from the Arab spring representing 17 Arab countries including Lebanon, Tunisia, Libya, Jordan. They all came to support the Palestinian cause and to confirm that the occupation will soon vanish.”
In August 2011, a post reported that plans were underway for three new convoys to break the “siege of Gaza.” Another post had reported that Issam Mustafa (aka Issam Youssef, Essam Mustafa, Essam Youssef), the Managing Trustee of the U.K. INTERPAL and former head of the Union of Good, had met at that time with the Hamas Prime Minister of Gaza in connection with an earlier Miles of Smiles convoy. According to a NEFA Foundation report, INTERPAL is perhaps the most important of the charities comprising the Union of Good, a coalition of charities headed by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi which helps to raise funds for Hamas. The Union of Good was banned by Israel in 2002 and was recently designated a terrorist entity by the United State. INTERPAL itself had been designated by the US in 2003. Previous posts have discussed the UK Charity Commisison’s order that INTERPAL sever its ties with the Union of Good, likely only a formality given that Essam Mustafa, the former head of the Union of Good is still the Managing Trustee of Interpal. The U.S. has attempted to persuade the U.K. government to do something about INTERPAL but the U.K. appears reluctant to anything which in their view would further antagonize its Muslim population.
Generally unreported by the media is that the entire Gaza convoy movement is largely a project of the Global Muslim Brotherhood. The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) has published an article by Ehud Rosen on the role of the Global Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas in the unsuccessful second Gaza Flotilla prior to that, the JCPA published a report on the role of the GMB in the first flotilla.