A newspaper report last week stated that ruling Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas had offered to recognize Israel's right to exist in return for a sovereign Palestinian state in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip. The report confused many by suggesting that Hamas had suddenly dropped its long-held goal of destroying Israel, thereby opening the door for peace, if only Israel would offer more concessions.
The faulty report appeared in the Jerusalem Post, which quoted British tycoon David Abrahams as carrying a positive message following his meeting with Dr. Aziz Dwaik, Hamas' senior representative in Judea and Samaria and speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council.
According to remarks attributed to Abrahams, Dwaik said Hamas was ready to accept Israel's right to exist and abolish its hostile charter.
A day later, Dwaik told Arab media that he had been misquoted, and that Hamas will never recognize Israel's sovereignty over any of the land. Gaza-based Hamas leader Salah Al-Bardawil also rejected the report's accuracy, insisting that the group's position "regarding the Zionist entity" remains unchanged.
Palestinian Authority officials aligned with the ruling Fatah faction told the newspaper at the weekend that they were growing frustrated by the intervention of European envoys like Abrahams, who they said are only complicating efforts to achieve reconciliation between the two Palestinian factions and a peace agreement with Israel.