The Islamic Resistance Movement, (Hamas) who won a majority in the recent Palestinian parliamentary elections, rejected the demands by the Quartet to disarm and recognize Israel.
The Quartet’s call did not include a call to end the Israeli occupation to the Palestinian territories, Sami Abu Zuhri, spokesman of Hamas said in response.
Abu Zuhri said "the Quartet should have demanded an end to occupation and aggression … not demanded that the victim should recognize the occupation and stand handcuffed in the face of the aggression."
The Quartet meeting, which included representatives of UN, USA, EU and Russia, was held on Monday.
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said earlier for a Palestinian government formed and led by Hamas, to maintain its level of financial support, it should commit to using nonviolent means, recognition of Israel and accepting what he called existing peace agreements between Israel and the Palestinians.
Annan’s statement corresponds to an earlier U.S. threat to cut financial aid if Hamas does not recognize Israel.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told a press conference, "That peaceful life, the Quartet has reiterated, can be achieved only through a two-state solution that recognizes the right of Israel to exist; that is committed to non-violence; that undertakes the obligations of the road map," she told reporters.
Israel had not so far declared its acceptance to the U.S backed Road Map. The Road Map states that a viable Palestinian State should be established, and similar to the dead Oslo accords, it demands an immediate halt for all settlement activities.
Israel continues to build settlements in the West Bank and continue with the construction of the separation wall that is shrinking the West Bank area into half, making a viable Palestinian state impossible.
Earlier this week, Hamas has offered a long term truce with Israel if it withdraws to the pre-1967 borders.
In his press conference on Saturday, Khaled Mashaal, head of Hamas’ political bureau said, Hamas may accept to establish a Palestinian state on all the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip, temporarily.
The Palestinian Authority receives about US$1 billion from overseas donors more than half of which is from European nations. The rest is a mix of funds from international donor agencies, Arab and Asian governments, and the U.S., which gave US$70 million in direct aid to the Palestinian Authority last year. Rice earlier ruled out any U.S. financial assistance to a Hamas government.