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Hamas briefing: Issues for a just peace in israel-palestine - Research Paper Example

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Briefing Paper for the Government of Australia Hamas briefing: Issues for a just peace in israel-palestine Hamas: Overview Hamas or ?arakat al-Muqawamat al-Islamiyyah was founded in the year 1987 as a Palestinian Islamist political party. It has a political wing and a military wing and is classified as a terrorist organization by several nations including the US, EU Canada and Japan (Frey, 2004)…
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Hamas briefing: Issues for a just peace in israel-palestine
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Download file to see previous pages However, in the year 2009, the political wing of Hamas was largely projected as the harbinger of peace for the region, and had agreed to engage in the conflict resolution process in case the borders of 1967 are respected by Israel. In addition to its political and military actvities, Hamas has also been involved with developing clinics, hospitals, mosques and schools for the conflict ravaged Palestinians (BBC, 2009). Additionally, the Palastinians have been increasingly drawn towards the hardline military response that Hamas has espoused and carried out, especially after the failure of the Oslo accord. As a result, Hamas won the 2006 Palastinian Authority legislative authority elections with a large majority (Schanzer and Pipes, 2008). Hamas contends that Israel should give up all the Palestinian territory that it occupied in 1967 including East Jerusalem, West Bank and the Gaza strip. Also, it wants that Palestinian refugees who were driven out of what is now Israel, should be allowed to return and resettle in their original homes. However, in 2007, Israel again entered and occupied large portions of Ghaza Strip, promting the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1860 that asked for immediate withdrawal of Isreal from the occupied territory (BBC News, 2009). Australia has supported the UN resolution 1860 for Israeli departure from Gaza Strip and restoration of peace. It contends that Israel should declare a ceasefire and this should also be honored by Hamas. Australia also thinks that both Israel and Palestine have to agree to a sustainable ceasefire and also agree to coexist within their individual geographic boundaries. Australia, till now has been giving its support to the peace process that was initiated by the UN security council as well as the talks in Egypt that involved France and Egypt as mediators (Schanzer and Pipes, 2008). Costs and Benefits It is essential to involve the extremists and hardliners in the peace processes, as their absence not only indicates that the peace initiative is doubted by a section of the people involved in teh conflic, but it also indicates that the extremists groups may sabotage the peace process with their activities. For example, the Hamas has resorted to distruption of the Oslo peace talks by perpetrating intermittenrt violence and causing disruption of the process. There is precedent that extremists groups in other conflict ravaged regions like Ireland and South Africa, where the extremists groups have been involved in the mainstream peace talks and have ultimately resulted in a more sustainable and acceptable resolution of the issues (Deflem, 2004). One of the disadvantages of engaging the terrorist groups into the peace talks is that the terrorist groups get legitamicy and this can be construed to mean that their past activities have been condoned. This may be observed as unethical as the organizations are linked with terror activities in their own region or even worldwide (Alesina and Perotti, 2004). This is the reason why some scholars have suggested ignoring the terrorits groups completely and avoiding to deal with groups that deal with violence (Frey, 1988). It is therefore essential to weigh the costs and benefits of engaging with Hamas by the Australian government – both in terms of the economic, international relations or ethical issues. Benefits of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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