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Hamas denies cease-fire initiative (UPI ) VIA-WASHINGTON TIMES) GAZA 01/28/04) Source: http://www.washingtontimes.com/upi-breaking/20040127-063743-8069r.htm
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GAZA, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- Senior Hamas representative Abdel-Aziz al- Ranteesi denied Tuesday published foreign reports saying that theh Islamic Resistance Movement had accepted a 10-year hudna, or truce, with Israel.
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Foreign news reports said earlier that al-Ranteesi stated that the Islamic Resistance Movement -- known as Hamas -- had agreed to a 10- year truce in exchange for an Israeli army pullout to pre-June 1967 borders, in order to establish an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip with east Jerusalem as its capital.
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Al-Ranteesi said in a written statement sent to United Press International after questions were e-mailed to him that "these reports were based on an interview I had during which I was answering a question about an initiative that was presented 10 years ago.
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"I assert that Hamas could not consider such a matter for the time being," said al-Ranteesi, who has been hiding and doesn´t use cellular phones in communicating with others out of fear of being targeted by Israeli intelligence or military units for assassination.
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Al-Ranteesi who escaped an attempt on his life last June, reiterated his denial of this report, asserting, "Hamas has shown in its charter that freeing Palestine requires the efforts and support of the Arab and Islamic nations and not just the Palestinian people."
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"Hamas would never consider giving up the lands of Palestine or even acknowledge what is called as the state of Israel, and we assert that the conflict and struggle is not over," said al-Ranteesi in his written statement.
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However, before al-Ranteesi denied the published reports, he as well as leaders of the hard-line Islamic Jihad said earlier this week they agreed on -- as a temporary solution to the conflict -- establishing a Palestinian state on the Palestinian territories occupied during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.
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Al-Ranteesi stated that his movement opposes a cease-fire agreement unless Israel withdraws forces from Palestinian territories that were occupied after 1967 war.
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He had also said that his movement intends to use new ways and weapons in its resistance against the Israeli occupation even if Israel completes the construction of the barrier around the Palestinian territories.
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Spokesman for the Islamic Jihad movement Nafez Azzam said earlier that his movement agrees on establishing a Palestinian state as a temporary solution, asserting "but this doesn´t mean giving up Palestinian rights in the lands of Palestine (Israel)."
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Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad are Islamist movements that have been calling for the liberation of Palestine, the Palestinian territories (West Bank and Gaza) and Israel, and the establishment of an Islamic Palestinian state.
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However, the two movement´s ideology dramatically changed when their leaders declared several times they would accept a Palestinian state that would only encompass the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. (copyright © 2004 News World Communications, Inc. 01/28/04)
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