Following are excerpts from reactions by Hamas leaders to the agreement reached between Hamas and Fatah. They aired on Al-Jazeera TV on April 27, 2011.
Deputy Head of Hamas Political Bureau Moussa Abu Marzouq: We know that one of the main issues that were in dispute was the fact that every government must have a political platform, and that if it has no political platform, the platform of the president becomes that of the Palestinian government. The Palestinian political platform was in dispute, due to the terms set by the Quartet.
Now the Quartet has become obsolete, along with its terms, and it is not taken too much into consideration. The Quartet and its terms were not mentioned in these understandings even once. Isn't that right, brother Azzam?
Fatah Representative Azzam Al-Ahmad: I'll be answering shortly.
Fatah and Hamas leaders share a laugh
Azzam Al-Ahmad: I would like to respond to the attempt by the Al-Jazeera TV [reporter] to sow discord.
Moussa Abu Marzouq: Don't say that...
Azzam Al-Ahmad: Of course.
Foreign Minister of Hamas Gaza Government Mahmoud Al-Zahhar: In the past, the atmosphere was one of relying on the so-called peace process, which has dried up and has no life left in it.
Making adjustments is a natural phenomenon. All creatures make adjustments, in accordance with the circumstances. Even in political issues, adjustments are made. The adjustments are not made at the expense of the principles, and were not what led to the agreement.
I should make it clear that the political platforms will remain different. The question is how to manage platforms that do not conflict with one another. There will be different platforms.
Our perspective is entirely different from that of Fatah. Fatah believes in negotiations, while we believe that negotiations with the Israeli enemy are in vain. We believe in armed struggle, in addition to responsible governing, as well as making the government's resources available to the resistance.
We believe that obeying the terms of the Quartet would have entailed the loss of the Palestinian rights. We believe in the Right of Return and in other things.
The terms of the Quartet meant, in short, recognition of the Israeli enemy, in exchange for bread, gas, and oil. Our steadfastness, which is credited – after Allah – to the Palestinian people, which demonstrated forbearance in this tragedy, has taught a lesson to the Quartet and others: The West cannot get everything it wants, even if it allows the Israeli enemy to launch a war against us, as happened at the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009.
Member of Hamas political Bureau 'Izzat Rishq: The negotiations track is an illusion, and it has reached a dead-end. The negotiators themselves say that they have achieved zero results. Therefore, through this unity, we, the Palestinian people, want to examine our future options, and to restore the importance of the option of resistance, steadfastness, and adherence to the rights and principles of the Palestinian people.