Following are excerpts from an interview with Hamas representative in Lebanon Osama Hamdan, which aired on ANB TV on January 25, 2006.
Osama Hamdan: In politics, there are sometimes efforts to use the term "eradication of a country" in order to show us that this is not possible, and that this term incites the world against us. We discuss this issue in a logical manner, and we want a clear response. This land is either Palestinian or not. If it is Palestinian land, it must remain Palestinian and must return to Palestinian hands. If it is not Palestinian land – it has nothing to do with us. If I ask whether Nazareth, Acre, the Galilee, Haifa, Jaffa, Lod, Ramla and Beersheba are Palestinian or not – if the answer is that they are, these lands must be liberated. This must be clear. Whoever says that these lands are not Palestinian – that's his problem. We in the Hamas movement – and the entire Palestinian people, I believe - are convinced that the land is Palestinian.
Another issue... We are not talking here about aggression. We are talking about defense. We are defending ourselves. An occupier came and took our land, and we cannot simply accept this.
What Isma'il Haniya said about accepting a phased solution - or what we called "liberation in phases" - is possible. But we want to emphasize clearly that we will never say that we agree to recognize this usurping entity on part of our land, no matter how small, so how could we possibly accept it on three quarters of Palestine?
The Hamas movement, Allah willing, will never condemn, stop or obstruct the Palestinian resistance. This message is directed first and foremost to our people: Hamas, which headed the resistance in recent years and made sacrifices for it, will continue to be committed to the resistance. Hamas, which will be successful in the parliamentary elections, will continue to adhere to the resistance. Brother Isma'il Haniya, who heads the [Hamas] list, emerged from the voting booth after casting his vote, and said: "We will never give up the weapons of the resistance." Hamas believes that this liberation must take place. If the occupation is smart enough, it must get out with the minimum possible losses. As for us, if we are required to sacrifice our lives and our blood in order to liberate our land and restore our rights - then we will do so. We do not love war or fighting, but we are prepared to sacrifice for the sake of our future. Therefore, let nobody imagine or delude himself for one moment that Hamas might condemn or obstruct any resistance against the occupation, under any circumstances.