Israeli media is reporting that Egypt plans to revoke the citizenship of thousands of Palestinians suspected of being affiliated with Hamas. According to a report in the Times of Israel, the Palestinians in question obtained their citizenship during the term of deposed Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Morsi:
March 6, 2014 Two days after a Cairo court banned Hamas’s activities in Egypt, the country’s security establishment intends to revoke the citizenship of thousands of Palestinians obtained during the one-year term of deposed Muslim Brotherhood president Mohammed Morsi, an Egyptian daily reported on Thursday.
Security sources told Al-Youm A-Sabi’ that their agencies are seeking information on 13,757 Palestinians who received Egyptian citizenship from the Muslim Brotherhood government before its July 2013 ouster in a military-backed revolution. The sources said that most of the Palestinians in question are affiliated with Hamas.
Mainstream Egyptian media remains staunchly opposed to the Muslim Brotherhood, which was branded a terrorist organization by the country’s new government in December. Deposed president Mohammed Morsi now faces charges of colluding with Hamas in Gaza to destabilize Egyptian national security.
The veracity of Al-Youm A-Sabi’s claims could not be independently confirmed.
According to the daily, Egyptian Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab has the right to revoke citizenship from those believed to pose a threat to the country’s national security with no need for court approval.
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The GMBDW reported on Tuesday that an Egyptian court had banned all Hamas activities in Egypt and closed the group’s offices in the country.
US media reported in January that Hamas was under what was described as severe economic strain as a result of losing income from the shuttered Gaza smuggling tunnels. The GMBDW also reported in January on what was described the “rapprochement” between Hamas and Iran following a three year breach as well as on the continuing decline of relations between Hamas and Egypt.
The Hamas charter says that it is “one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine” and soon after Hamas took over the Gaza strip, Muslim Brotherhood representatives traveled to Gaza from Egypt through the newly-opened border to review Hamas military formations. A Hamas journalist has acknowledged the role that the “international Muslim Brotherhood” has played in providing funds for the purchase of weapons and Hamas is known to be supported financially and politically by the global Muslim Brotherhood. A Muslim Brotherhood spokesman revealed that a coalition of London-based Muslim groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood, were behind the mass demonstrations staged to protest Israeli actions in the 2008 Gaza war and the Global Muslim Brotherhood and its Turkish affiliates were also intimately involved, along with the Turkish government, in the June 2010 Gaza flotilla that was involved in a violent altercation with Israeli naval forces. Following a period of seeming ascension related to the period of Egyptian rule by the Muslim Brotherhood, the organization was forced to scramble to try and find other state sponsors after Mohamed Morsi was deposed as President. In September 2013, it appeared that Hamas had succeeded in re-establishing close ties with Iran. In January 2013, Israeli intelligence sources claimed that Turkey has replaced Iran as the chief source of Hamas financing.