Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas responded publicly for the first time on Sunday to the "national reconciliation" drafted last week by Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti and Sheikh Abdel Halek Natshe of Hamas.
The document, which was hammered in Israeli jail Hadarim, calls for accepting to give up 78 percent of the Historic Palestine, pre-1948 and to establish a Palestinian state on the land occupied in 1967 as well as the agreements signed previously by the Palestinian Authority with Israel and the international community.
"The document was drafted in Hadarim Prison, and the other prisons are not a party to it and therefore it must be studied further, but it contains worthy principles to which agreement is possible," Haniyeh said in a speech at a two-day conference in
The conference marked the 58th anniversary of the Nakba, or "catastrophe," in reference to the destruction of over 400 Palestinian villages in 1948 by Jewish military groups, after which was established.
"We always demanded ‘s recognition of Palestinian rights and the establishment of a Palestinian state, and if recognizes these principles, then we will decide on our position on the matter," Haniyeh continued.
Regarding the right of return and the Nakba, Haniyeh asserted that it is an unforgettable right.
"The occupation gambled on our elders dying and our young forgetting, but the reality is that our people is still struggling and the young are bringing about one revolution after another."
This is the first time Hamas gives a serious consideration to a document refering to Palestine as the land occupied in 1967. It has always referred to Palestine as the historic Palestine pre-1948 between the sea and the river, which indicates a change in Hamas’ political stand although not confirmed or declared yet.