James Marlow

Iran has decided to renew financial aid to Hamas after a prolonged period of frosty relations between the two sides that lasted for years, according to a report in the English newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat.

The report claims that the decision was made after a series of meetings between senior Hamas figures and members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Beirut.

Intensive talks were held between the sides in which senior Hezbollah figures also took part. It was also agreed that Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh would visit Tehran in the near future in an effort to bring about a reconciliation and build new bridges between Tehran and Hamas.
The decision to bring the Islamic Republic closer to the Gaza terrorist organization was made when Iranian Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani sent a letter of congratulations to the new political bureau chief, Haniyeh, for his election.

Relations between Iran and Hamas have been in a state of stagnation since the outbreak of the civil war in Syria after Hamas expressed opposition to Bashar Assad’s regime and support for the rebels, contrary to Iran and its proxies in Lebanon, especially Hezbollah.
The connection between Khaled Mashaal, the former head of Hamas’ political bureau, and Iran’s sworn enemy in the region, Saudi Arabia, also did not contribute to the strained relationship.

Iran feared the election of Musa Abu Marzuq as the leader of the organization would further weaken the already precarious relations because Abu Marzuq was believed to have thought that Iran was not helping Hamas. An anonymous source (apparently a Middle East intelligence agency) broadcast about a year ago an intercepted phone call between Abu Marzuq and another man, in which he strongly attacks Iran, accusing it of talking too much without acting in support of Hamas.

In a letter sent by Soleimani, he also congratulated Yahya Sinwar, one of the released prisoners of the Shalit deal who was appointed Hamas leader in Gaza and supported the renewal of the alliance with Iran.

“We expect to strengthen cooperation with members of Hamas, the allies of the axis of resistance, in order to restore the debate on the Palestinian issue,” Soleimani wrote.
Soleimani told Haniyeh that he expects their efforts to bring the Palestinian issue back to the forefront of the global struggle of Muslims and free believers.