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Hamas leader calls for 'all Palestine', national unity

Published on Dec 9, 2012 6:51 AM
Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal (centre) and senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh (front right) wave to the crowd from a car as they leave a rally marking the 25th anniversary of the founding of Hamas, in Gaza City on Dec 8, 2012. Meshaal, in an uncompromising speech during his first ever visit to Gaza after decades of exile, told a mass rally on Saturday he would never recognise Israel and pledged to "free the land of Palestine inch by inch". -- PHOTO: REUTERS

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - Hamas politburo chief Khaled Meshaal on Saturday rejected ceding "an inch" of Palestinian territory to Israel or recognising the Jewish state, in a speech in Gaza marking the 25th anniversary of the Islamist group's founding.

"Palestine is our land and nation from the (Mediterranean) sea to the (Jordan) river, from north to south, and we cannot cede an inch or any part of it," he said of the borders currently held by Israel and the Palestinian Authority, at a rally.

"Resistance is the right way to recover our rights, as well as all forms of struggle - political, diplomatic, legal and popular, but all are senseless without resistance," he said.

On Palestinian unity, he said: "We are a single authority, a single reference, and our reference is the PLO, which we want united." He was referring to the Palestine Liberation Organisation which, in the eyes of the international community, is the sole body that purports to speak for all the Palestinian people."

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