Haneya says to respect any outcome of Palestinian referendum on peace

09:31, December 02, 2010      

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by Fares Akram

GAZA, Dec. 1 (Xinhua) -- Hamas will respect any Palestinian referendum on a peaceful settlement with Israel even if the agreement was against its agenda, deposed Prime Minister of the Hamas government Ismail Haneya said Wednesday.

"The (Hamas) government's program includes the creation of a Palestinian statehood within the borders of lands that Israel occupied in 1967," Haneya said at a press conference held at his office in Gaza city.

However, if another solution was reached through peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian National Authority (PNA), whose chances of success was questioned by Haneya, "there would be a referendum and Hamas will respect its results, even if it contradicts its policies," Haneya said.

Meanwhile, Haneya said his government will maintain an undeclared ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian factions in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip through 2011, which, he noted was one of his government's "priorities in the coming year."

However, he said if Israel attacks Gaza, Hamas "will resist and will not surrender."

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