Hamas

Nature and Functioning of the Supreme National Authority of the Return Marches and Lifting the Siege

A year has passed since the return march project began. Preparations for the project began in early 2018 as an initiative of social activists and organizations operating in the Gaza Strip. In the early stages, when the idea was being formulated, the organizers of the march claimed that the events would not be of a political nature, that official representatives of the various organizations would not participate, and that there would be no violence
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (April 9– April 16, 2019)

This past week the level of violence demonstrated at the return march was again relatively low (about 7,500 people participated in the march events). Hamas spokesman Husam Badran said the understandings reached meant an improvement in the standard of living in the Gaza Strip. The Hamas-operated Night Harassment Units said they intended to renew their activities with greater intensity. On April 15, 2019, an agreement was reached to end the hunger strike of the Palestinian terrorists in Israeli jails.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (April 3– April 8, 2019)

This past week events focused on the Friday return march, attended by about 10,000 Palestinians. The level of violence demonstrated was relatively low. This past week senior Hamas figures often made references to the understandings achieved through Egyptian mediation for an arrangement. The security prisoners in Israeli jails announced that they would begin a hunger strike on April 7, 2019.
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Spotlight on Iran (March 24, 2019 – April 7, 2019)

Syrian opposition sources reported that at least seven people were killed in the strike attributed to Israel in the Sheikh Najjar area in northwestern Aleppo city, on the night of March 27-28. Senior Iranian officials condemned the decision of President Trump to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights and described it as a grave violation of international law. The Syrian government approved the agreement signed between the Syrian Electricity Ministry and the Iranian energy and infrastructure giant, MAPNA, to build a power plant in Lattakia. The Deputy Head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Salah al-Arouri, declared in a media interview that Hamas is determined to bolster ties with Iran, and that the practical implications of this improvement in relations is already evident on the ground.
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News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (March 27– April 2, 2019)

Events this past week focused on the return march held on Saturday, March 30, 2019, which marked the first anniversary of the return marches as well as Israeli Arab Land Day. In the meantime, tensions increased in the jails in Israel in the wake of the intention of the Israeli Prison Service to install devices to block the prisoners' cellular reception. Senior Hamas figures raised before the members of the Egyptian mediators' delegation the so-called "worsening" of the prisoners' conditions. Hamas also complained to the UN envoy to the Middle East.
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Return march events marking the first anniversary of the marches and Israeli Arab Land Day

On Saturday, March 30, 2019, a return march was held to mark the first anniversary of the marches and the Israeli Arab Land Day. The event was expected to climax a year of marches, and extensive preparations were made for it. Before the events, Hamas and the organizers made efforts to enlist a large number of participants to demonstrate popular support. The background to the recent escalation in the Gaza Strip was rocket fire targeting central Israel; the deployment of large IDF forces near the border; the presence of the Egyptian mediators' delegation in the Gaza Strip.
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Hamas

Hamas is a fundamentalist Sunni Muslim organization founded in the Gaza Strip in 1987 by members of the Muslim Brotherhood. It seeks to establish an Islamic state on the entire territory of the State of Israel and does not recognize Israel’s right to exist.


The Hamas leadership has two branches: the internal leadership, which includes the military wing and the de-facto Hamas administration in the Gaza Strip, responsible for the day-to-day activities of governing the Gaza Strip population, in addition to social, educational activity vis-à-vis the population of the Gaza Strip; and the external leadership, Hamas’s political bureau, located beyond the borders of the Gaza Strip and Judea and Samaria. The external leadership maintains relations with various countries and bodies, and deals mainly with raising money and finding other resources for Hamas in the Gaza Strip.


Hamas’s ideology seeks to establish an Islamic Palestinian state on the entire territory of Israel. The preferred way to achieve this goal is through armed struggle. Hamas has a military wing, the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, which carries out terrorist attacks against Israel, including rocket fire from the Gaza Strip and various kinds of other attacks (such as shooting, suicide bombings, abductions etc.) in the territories of Judea, Samaria and Israel.


Over the years, Hamas has challenged the PLO and the Palestinian Authority, causing conflicts between the sides, culminating in June 2007 with Hamas’s violent takeover of the Gaza Strip and the suppression of Fatah and the Palestinian Authority members. Ever since, the rift between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority has grown.

Hamas has been designated as a terrorist organization by several countries, including Israel, the United States, and the European Union.