Middle East

Hamas official lambasts new Egyptian regime

A Hamas policeman (R) standing in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on the border with Egypt, on July 5, 2013, talks to an Egyptian soldier standing in the Egyptian side of the border. AFP PHOTO / SAID KHATIB

RAMALLAH, Palestine: A senior Hamas official says the new Egyptian government’s crackdown on militants in the Sinai Peninsula is part of an anti-Hamas campaign, the first criticism by the group of Egypt’s new leadership.

The Gaza-based official says the Egyptian military has been pressuring Hamas since it ousted Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi, whose Muslim Brotherhood is Hamas’ parent organization.

He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was referring to an internal Hamas discussion. The comments came two days after an Egyptian military helicopter flew over the Gaza Strip.

The official also criticized Egypt’s targeting of smuggling tunnels under the Gaza-Egypt border.

The Egyptian military is moving against Islamist militant groups in Sinai that have launched attacks after Mursi’s ouster.





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