During a press conference Wednesday, President Obama said he has "no sympathy for Hamas," while expressing his concern for the Palestinian people. Maen Areikat, the Chief P.L.O. Representative to the U.S. appeared on Erin Burnett OutFront to discuss the situation in Gaza and respond to Obama’s comments on Hamas.
There have widespread allegations that Hamas has been launching rockets from civilian-populated areas. Video released by French TV Wednesday shows just that - a rocket launcher in a residential neighborhood, with children playing around it. Burnett asked Areikat if he condemns Hamas for these actions:
“We don’t know the circumstances of this particular rocket launcher,” Areikat said, referencing the video. “If there has been incidents…in which fighters from Palestinian factions fired at Israel from civilian populated centers, I think these were isolated centers. But to portray that this was the rule and not the exception is not a fair representation of what is happening in Gaza.”
On the topic of a weakened Palestinian National Authority, Areikat challenged Obama's position:
“I don’t necessarily agree with the assessment that we’ve been weakened," he said. "To say that we must work with the Palestinian leadership is an acknowledgment that the P.L.O. leadership is genuine, sincere about seeking peace.”
Watch the above interview, and tune into Erin Burnett OutFront weeknights at 7P.