Deposed Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haneya on Sunday said U.S. President-elect Barak Obama and the Israelis will not overcome his movement.
Speaking before hundreds of thousands of Hamas supporters who gathered to celebrate the Islamic movement's 21st anniversary in Gaza city, Haneya said: "You will not win and will not defeat this great people," referring to Obama, "the Zionists and those who participate in blockading the Palestinian people."
Haneya also said the current U.S. President George Bush "is falling while Hamas castles are not."
The number of the crowds is estimated around 350,000, including women and children, flooding the Katiba square in southwest of Gaza city. "I don't see an end to these crowds but definitely Allah sees," Haneya said, adding that this reflects Hamas' support.
The United States and Israel lead an international campaign to isolate Hamas since it won parliamentary elections in 2006 against Fatah, the secular movement led by moderate President Mahmoud Abbas.
Haneya questioned the effect of Israeli sanctions that tightened on the Gaza Strip since June 2007 when Hamas routed pro-Abbas forces and seized security installations in the coastal territory.
"Hamas is deep-rooted like Palestine's mountains and our people are stronger under the siege and Hamas is more popular after the siege," he said.