Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Egyptian authorities turned down a request from Hamas to meet with President Hosni Mubarak, following a request last month by a visiting Hamas delegation after the victory in the Palestinian legislative election.
Hamas was sure Egypt would change its position after Hamas's election victory. Apparently, the rejection stems from Hamas's failure to respond to Egypt's demand that it recognize Israel, accept the signed agreements and end the violence against Israel. This is why Egypt decided after the election to recall most of its representatives from the Gaza Strip.
The Egyptian refusal to meet with Hamas could change if there is a change in Hamas' positions.
I hope this will hammer Hamas and force it to change. I also tend to believe that Mubarak's refusal to meet Hamas is related to his refusal to meet Egypt's branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. If he met Hamas, people will start asking: why isn't he seeing his own MB?
On the other hand, Egyptian officials told Fatah representatives that they would like to see the group join a Hamas-led government. They recommended that Fatah accept the offer to join the government, on the assumption that after Hamas forms a government the preventive security service will remain under the control of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. Fatah rejected the proposal.
I am against Fatah joining. Hamas should bear the responsibility of its failures (or successes). Fatah should be busy reforming itself and examining what went wrong. And Israel should be busy thinking about how to help Fatah in the future. Enough what happened.