Photo Credit: Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90
Hamas soldiers in Gaza

Israeli Ministers are demanding that Palestinian Unity Government President, Mahmoud Abbas, disarm the independent Hamas army in Gaza and exert his authority over Gaza.

Defense Minister Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon said at a meeting with foreign military attaches, that following the Palestinian Authority reconciliation agreement, Abbas must apply his rule in Gaza and disarm Hamas. Ya’alon added that if Abbas doesn’t do that then he is deceiving the world.

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In a more strongly worded statement, Minister of Intelligence Dr. Yuval Steinitz said on Thursday,

“Pursuant to US Secretary of State John Kerry’s statement to the effect that the new Palestinian government is ‘committed to previous agreements’, we must ask: Is it his intention to now demand that Abu Mazen and his government publicly reiterate their commitment to ‘the principle of complete demilitarization’ which constitutes a cornerstone of the Oslo accords, and to begin dismantling and destroying the thousands of missiles stationed in the Gaza Strip?

If not, the Palestinian remarks about ‘honoring previous agreements’ border on deception and fraud.”

Hamas has many thousands of rockets and missiles in Gaza, as well as its own independent army, which they used last time to kick out Fatah (Palestinian Authority/PLO) from Gaza, only the IDF prevented Hamas from also taking over the Palestinian Authority in Judea and Samaria. This latest unity agreement between Hamas and Fatah left Hamas in charge of its own military, which is the exact same model that Hezbollah implemented in Lebanon.

Among other things, an independent Hamas army, not under Palestinian Authority control, is a severe and utter breach of the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap. It also makes it clear that Hamas is in charge, or at least an equal partner with Fatah.

Way back in 2005, then Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that Abbas must disarm Hamas, and the PA has an obligation according to the Roadmap to do so, but she added, Abbas must be given time to make it happen.

Nine years later, we’re sure that Abbas should have had more than enough time to disarm Hamas, but this time around, the US hasn’t isn’t even mentioning disarming Hamas as a requirement.

Times change.

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