Anti-Israel rabbis vow Hamas support

A group of anti-Zionist rabbis has visited the Palestinian parliament to pledge their support for the prospective Hamas-led government.

    The rabbis were welcomed by Palestinian legislators

    The rabbis from the small ultra-Orthodox movement Neturei Karta, which this month sent a delegation to Iran, travelled to the West Bank town of Ram Allah to express their support for the Islamic group.

    The group rejects the existence of the state of Israel as contrary to Jewish law and believes the land should be returned to Palestinians.

    Neturei Karta believe that no Jewish state should be created before the coming of the messiah.

    "We are true Jews who have come to the Palestinian Legislative Council today to proclaim our allegiance to the new Hamas regime," said a spokesman for the group.

    "We came to express our complete support for the Palestinian people. We consider ourselves Palestinians and, like them, we regard ourselves as under Zionist occupation."

    Parliament Speaker Aziz Dweik called an adjournment of parliament, controlled by Hamas since its January election victory, so that the 14 rabbis, led by spiritual leader Moshe Hirsh, could be welcomed by legislators.

    The anti-Zionist movement once represented a stronger current within ultra-Orthodox Judaism, but its membership has dropped to about 400 families in Israel, with supporters in Britain and the US.

    Hirsh, proclaiming himself a Palestinian Jew, served as Jewish affairs adviser to the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

    SOURCE: AFP


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