The Jerusalem Post
December 2, 2011 - 1:00am

The Jordanian government understands that Hamas does not consider the possibility of Jordan as an alternative "homeland" for the Palestinian people, a member of Hamas's political bureau told pan-Arab daily Al Hayat in an interview published Friday.

"[Our] brothers in Jordan know very well that we reject the idea of a surrogate homeland, an option still carried by some Israeli leaders," Izzt Al-Rishq told Al Hayat. "We do not accept any substitute for Palestine despite our appreciation and pride for Jordan."

"Palestine is Palestine, and Jordan is Jordan," Rishq clarified.

Rishq's comments come amid rumors that an upcoming visit by Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal would focus around reopening Hamas's political bureau in the Hashemite Kingdom.
Mashaal was expelled along with all other Hamas diplomats from Jordan in 1999 when the Islamist group's offices in Amman were closed.

Jordan's Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh reiterated following meetings with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah that the Hashemite Kingdom would not form bilateral relations with Hamas, adding that were Mashaal to visit Amman, his trip would be a "quick one."

A week after Judeh made those comments, Hamas announced that Mashaal's visit to Jordan was suspended indefinitely, citing a "lack of commitment"on the Jordanian side, according to the Jordan Times.


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