Monday, June 25, 2007

Suleiman to Haniyya: Ease up on the intelligence disclosures

The article in Al-Masriyoun, detailing intelligence information that sources said Hamas had turned over to Egyptian authorities (see prior post), appeared on the morning of Saturday June 23. This morning, the Lebanese paper Al-Akhbar reports that the head of Egyptian intelligence Omar Suleiman phoned Haniyya later that day and asked him to go easy on the revelations because it was a problem for Egypt. The Al-Akhbar account (part of its overall curtain-raiser on the Sharm el-Sheikh summit starting today) fits the intelligence-disclosures issue into its story like this:
Egyptian diplomats said Cairo is going to again try to launch an initiative for discussions with Hamas, to include Fatah along with other Palestinian factions, as long as it is held in the Egyptian capital with the participation by representatives of Saudi Arabia, Syria and the EU. It is indicated that the head of Egyptian Mukhabarat, Omar Suleiman, made a rare telephone call the day before yestereday (that would be Saturday June 23) to [Haniyya]. Knowledgeable Arab sources say Suleiman asked Haniyya to stop the media campaign that had been launched against the PA and leaders of Fatah, indicating that Cairo was troubled by the disclosures recently by Hamas of certain documents and information relating to the operations of the Palestinian security apparatus and mukhabarat. And Egyptian authorities said Hamas is going to send a delegation to Cairo in the next couple of days to follow up on talks [already held] by the general secretary of Islamic Jihad, Ramadan Shalah, and his second, Ziyad al-Nakhala, with Omar Suleiman. [Meanwhile] Mubarak escalated his criticism of Hamas [calling the Gaza takeover a "coup" and warning of the results of a split Palestine]. And Mubarak stressed the support of Egypt for legality of the PA and its president Abbas...
The picture seems to be of a two-track process, with Mubarak continuing the US-mandated attack on Hamas, while the man who more likely actually runs things, Omar Suleiman, works the levers of power to try and bring Hamas back into the diplomatic process, in exchange for two things: (1) Hamas not further embarassing Egypt with the intelligence-leaks; and (2) the diplomatic boost of having an important conciliation meeting with Hamas and Fatah in Cairo, embellished diplomatically by the presence of representatives of Saudi Arabia, Syria and the EU.

This could be an important fly in the ointment for the US-Israel strategy of further isolation of Hamas.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The picture seems to be of a two-track process,"

Thats politics in the Arab world, it isn't as if the Egyptians don't know that both the US and Israel are conspiracy against them but they can't make a public statement to that effect nor can they publicly support Hamas so they'll appease the American/European governments with public statements while covertly working with those who serve their interests......
Thinks for the post by the way.

5:57 AM  
Blogger Randal said...

I see the PA have followed Egypt in paying a bit more of the price for US assistance - declaring that Iran was behind it all.

Iran played 'big role' in Gaza takeover,21985,21962103-5005961,00.html

It isn't enough for the Washington warmongers that people make cryptic references to "foreign elements". They need the actual word "Iran" used as often as possible in conjunction with every negative (for the US) story. That's why we keep hearing repeatedly discredited assertions that Iran is "behind" attacks on US and UK occupation forces in Iraq.

Can anyone doubt that another war of aggression is coming?

7:51 AM  

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