Hamas Refuses to Disarm, Threatens to Send Weapons to West Bank

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Multiple previous reconciliation attempts between the Palestinian factions have failed.

He added that "it seems one of the conditions for the return of Iranian support [to Hamas] is the continuation of the division". Meanwhile, Hamas has still refused to disarm, a provision of the agreement.

According to Hamas chief in Gaza Yahya Sinwar, Iran is the biggest sponsor of the Kassam Brigades.

In August, Sinwar said Iran is now "the largest backer financially and militarily" of Hamas's armed wing.

"The weapons of the resistance are a red line that is non-debatable", Khalil al-Hayya, deputy head of Hamas in Gaza, told a press conference, referring to the Qassam Brigades.

Hamas Refuses to Disarm, Threatens to Send Weapons to West Bank
Hamas Refuses to Disarm, Threatens to Send Weapons to West Bank

Hamas operative Saleh al-Arouri (2nd-R) meets with Iranian official Hossein Amir Abdollahian (R) and other Hamas operatives in Lebanon on August 1, 2017. According to Sheikh, Hamas continues to bar PA officials from collecting taxes and has stifled discussions on the transfer of security. As of Sunday, Palestinian Authority Minister of Civil Affairs Hussein al-Sheikh said that Fatah has only been able to assume control over 5% of Gaza, which remains under the military and political control of Hamas.

Many consider the most hard obstacle facing the reconciliation process to be the fate of Hamas's 25,000-strong military wing.

The West Bank and the Gaza Strip have been politically divided since 2007, when Hamas wrested control of Gaza from Fatah, ending a short-lived unity government established after Hamas swept the 2006 legislative elections that were ultimately rejected by Fatah, Israel and the global community.

Hamas, which is considered a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union, has fought three wars with Israel since 2008.

A major dispute between the two parties is the future of Gaza's security and weapons.

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