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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ahmed Yousef: Crimes against humanity committed in Palestine

Sun, 25 Jan 2009 15:58:25 GMT | PressTV

Ahmed Yousef, Political Advisor to Ismail Haniyah.
The following is a Press TV interview with the Political Advisor to Ismail Haniyah, Ahmed Yousef.

Press TV: Israel has finally admitted using white phosphorous in Gaza. Will you take this to international courts?

Ahmed Yousef: Of course, there are a lot people NGOs and also some states who will absolutely sue Israeli generals and the Israeli leadership, Olmert, Tzipi [Livni] and Barak; they will take them to courts, the international court of justice of course; this is crimes against humanity committed in Palestine, thousands, hundreds of women and children were killed and thousands were injured. The Israelis used phosphoric weapons ... The Israelis are committing all kind of crimes and everybody is talking about taking them to international court of justice.

Press TV: Israel refused to lift the siege of Gaza; what will Hamas do if Israel continues to do so?

Ahmed Yousef: Israel will continue the siege and it has not actually opened the gates. Yes we will have to defend ourselves because sanctions and siege is declaration of war and we have the right to defend ourselves. Resistance will continue and people will do everything, they will make everything necessary to lift the sanctions and end the siege. I hope the world community, after what happened in Gaza, understand that the Palestinians are not going to surrender; they are either victorious or they will die for a good cause.

Press TV: So will Hamas hold talks with the Israeli side over the issue?

Ahmed Yousef: The issue is not going to be between Hamas and Israel. It is going to be a third party mediating any kind of negotiations with the Israelis. they are now in Cairo discussing a ceasefire ... the Israelis will accept to end all their aggression and end the siege of Gaza. This is actually the condition for the continuation of any ceasefire.

Press TV: So how much longer do you expect the ceasefire to last?

Ahmed Yousef: Actually today, there is a meeting between the Hamas delegation and Omar Suleiman from the Egyptian government and we will hear from them what the position of Israel exactly is. They are not going to abide by all agreements and we need not expand it (ceasefire), to have more commitments regarding how to rebuild Gaza. I don't know for how long the ceasefire could be held. But today I am sure and tomorrow we will hear from the delegation exactly what decision is going to be taken regarding the ceasefire and regarding what kind of the agreement we will have with the Israelis through the Egyptians.

Press TV: What does Hamas expect from the new US administration?

Ahmed Yousef: We expect from the American administration to be more fair and objective and to have an evenhanded policy and put pressure on Israel and help Palestinians to have their own independent and free state. This is what we hope Mr. Obama would adopt as part of its policy and to change the foreign policy I mean to prove that the Israelis see some change and the US change its policy from being biased and taking sides with Israel to being impartial and objective.

Press TV: Why did Egypt keep the Rafah crossing closed during the Israeli war?

Ahmed Yousef: That is what we wonder about and everybody in all Arab Muslim countries wonder why the Egyptian insisted to keep Gaza's Rafah crossing closed while it was something Egypt supposed to control that crossing. Israel should have no authority in anyway to be in the Rafah crossing. That is something between Egypt and Gaza and the sole authority should be for the Palestinians and Egyptians. I wonder why the Egyptians insisted on keeping the border, that why and making obstacles for the people who rushed to help Palestinians, doctors, parliamentarian and journalists I wonder why this thing happened.

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