Hamas says Gaza calm depends on Israeli actions in Jerusalem

A senior Hamas official says Israel must halt its “aggression” in both Gaza and Jerusalem if it wants calm following an 11-day war earlier this month.

Khalil al-Haya speaks after meeting with Egypt’s intelligence chief Abbas Kamel, who visited Gaza after meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on a trip aimed at shoring up an informal ceasefire brokered by Cairo.

Kamel, who has not given public statements, is the highest-ranking Arab official to visit Gaza since 2018. He met with Yahya Sinwar, the top Hamas leader in Gaza.

“We discussed several files, most importantly the necessity to oblige the occupation to stop its aggression on Gaza, Jerusalem, Sheikh Jarrah and all over Palestine,” al-Haya tells reporters. He says Israel must also fully lift the blockade it imposed on Gaza to prevent Hamas from obtaining weapons when the terror group seized power from rival Palestinian forces in 2007.

“If this happens, then calm and stability could return,” he says.

Hamas official Khalil al-Haya (C-R) embraces General Abbas Kamel (C-L), Egypt’s intelligence chief, as the latter arrives for a meeting with leaders of Hamas in Gaza City on May 31, 2021. (MAHMUD HAMS / AFP)
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