November 16, 2017

KNOWING YOUR ALLIES:

Iran pushing for Hamas-Hezbollah reconciliation : Observers said former allies are both likely to benefit from rapprochement. (Middle East Online, 11/16/17)

Saleh al-Arouri, Hamas's deputy political chief, had a rare public meeting with Hezbollah Secretary- General Hassan Nasrallah in Bei­rut on October 31. The meeting occurred soon after Arouri visited Iran.

Pro-Hezbollah al-Manar TV said Arouri and Nasrallah discussed "the Zionist aggression against Gaza and its ramifications" follow­ing an Israeli attack on a tunnel in the Gaza Strip that killed eight members of the Palestinian group Islamic Jihad.

Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh took part in a Hezbollah-sponsored con­ference on the Balfour Declaration on November 1 in Beirut, which kicked off with a message from Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Other senior partici­pants included Hezbollah's deputy chief Sheikh Naim Qassem.

Observers said both sides were likely to benefit from rapproche­ment.

"It is no secret that Hamas, de­spite having different positions regarding the Syrian crisis, needs Hezbollah when it comes to fund­ing, training, securing supply lines for weapons and providing resi­dence for Hamas cadres in Leba­non," Adnan Abu Amer, wrote on the website Al-Monitor.

"For its part, Hezbollah needs a Palestinian movement, such as Hamas, to restore its popularity among Arab public opinion, which it lost after being involved in the wars in Syria, Iraq and Yemen against Sunni Muslims. Hamas... may help dispel Hezbollah's sec­tarian image," Amer added.

Posted by at November 16, 2017 6:23 AM

  

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