Deputy head of Hamas Ismail Haniyeh on Sunday lent his support to what he called the “al-Quds Intifada,” saying that “no world in the power” would be able to stop it.
Speaking at a demonstration in Beirut, Haniyeh said: “We are ready for political and popular unity at all levels and willing to agree on a united national strategy to protect the intifada, regain Palestinians’ rights, and adhere to the inalienable nationalistic principles.”
He added that national unity was “embodied today by Palestinian people in the field” and should be maintained and deepened at a political level.
“No power in the world will succeed in putting out the al-Quds Intifada,” he said.
“Some people thought that our people have tired from intifadas, revolutions and resistance, and even based their strategies on the thought that our people would not rise again. However, the al-Quds Intifada came to thwart all their plans.”
The protests that have swept the occupied Palestinian territory since the beginning of the month have been referred to as the al-Quds Intifada, or Jerusalem uprising, due to events at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in September that served as a trigger.
Many observers have noted a lack of leadership and political control over the protests, suggesting that both the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority and Hamas have been left behind by the Palestinian public.
Hamas in particular has struggled to find its footing. Al-Monitor reported last week that while Hamas supports an intifada — which could bolster its role as the traditional resistance faction — it “would rather see it conducted without the movement’s involvement.”
“Hamas, as has been extensively reported, is more interested in having a long-term agreement with Israel than engaging in another armed conflict,” the report said.
World leaders, including US Secretary of State John Kerry and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, have been scrambling to find a solution to bring an end to the unrest, including new measures at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound to safeguard Palestinians’ rights there.