Israel views the recent statements by PA Prime Minister Haniyeh as the kind of extremism that fuels terrorism and that has prevented progress toward peace between Israel and the Palestinian people.

Speaking last week in Syria and Iran on a tour of the Middle East, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh reiterated that his Hamas-led government would never recognize Israel and would continue its jihad against it, until the state of the Jewish people is utterly destroyed.

During his visit to Damascus and Teheran, Haniyeh made the following declarations:
 
• At the Yarmouk refugee camp near Damascus on Tuesday, December 5, Haniyeh vowed his Hamas movement and government would never recognize Israel.

• Haniyeh also said Tuesday that in all the time he had served as prime minister, he had never acted against Palestinian armed groups or prevented them from carrying out operations against Israel.

• Haniyeh declared that his government does not condemn the Palestinian "resistance" but embraces it. He stressed that the Palestinian people would not give up "a single grain of the entire land of Palestine" nor would it relinquish the "right of return" of Palestinian refugees to within the borders of Israel.

• Haniyeh praised the “heroic” suicide bombing attack carried out two weeks ago by Fatimah Omar al-Najar, a 68-year-old Palestinian grandmother of 25.

• In Iran two days later, Haniyeh told a Teheran mosque during Friday prayers that his government would never recognize Israel and would fight to liberate all of Jerusalem.

• At the Teheran mosque Haniyeh also stated: "The world arrogance and Zionists … want us to recognize the usurpation of the Palestinian lands and stop jihad and resistance and accept the agreements reached with the Zionist enemies in the past. We will never recognize the usurper Zionist government and will continue our jihad-like movement until the liberation of all of Palestine."

While Israel is attempting to work with Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to promote calm and to move forward in the search for peace, Israel views Haniyeh’s statements as the kind of extremism that fuels terrorism and that has prevented progress toward peace between Israel and the Palestinian people.

A Hamas-led government that refuses to accept the three primary conditions for peace negotiations – recognizing Israel, halting terrorism, and fulfilling agreements signed by the Palestinian Authority – cannot be viewed as a partner in efforts toward a peaceful solution of the conflict.

Haniyeh’s visit to Syria and Iran, and his extremist declarations in the capitals of these terrorism-sponsoring states, clearly demonstrate that Hamas is an active component of the Middle East axis of terrorism and hatred.