Voz media US Voz.us

Report: Hamas leaders plan to move from Qatar to Iraq

The Emirati newspaper The National reported that the decision is related to increased pressure from Doha and Washington to show greater flexibility in negotiations to reach a ceasefire with Israel. The terrorist leadership denied the claims.

Ismail Haniya, political leader of Hamas.KHAMENEI.IR / AFP

Published by


In light of mounting pressure from Qatar and the United States on Hamas to reach a deal to free hostages, the terrorist organization's leaders are planning to leave Qatari soil and move to Iraq, the Emirati newspaper The National reported.

However, Israeli newspaper Ynet reported that the Palestinian terrorist group dismissed the claims. "There is no truth to reports suggesting that Hamas is planning to leave Qatar and move to Iraq," the Islamist organization said.

The Emirati media outlet said the Iraqi government approved the move last month and that Iran will be responsible for the security of Hamas leaders and their offices in Baghdad.

The National claimed that Ismail Haniya, a Hamas political leader, discussed the measure in May with Iraqi and Iranian officials. It also stated that the talks were confirmed by a senior member of the Iraqi parliament and leader of a political party with close ties to a Tehran-backed armed group.

The Emirati newspaper further reported that there is no agreement among Iraqi political parties regarding Hamas leaders moving to Baghdad. Some of these groups, especially the Kurds and some Sunnis, fear that this situation will deepen differences with the United States. However, despite the lack of consensus, the Iraqi government will move forward with the decision to host the Palestinian terrorist group, The National added.

While the date for the move has not yet been decided, the newspaper reported that Hamas opened a political office in Baghdad this month and plans to set up a communications office in the Iraqi capital in the coming weeks.

When asked about the report, Matthew Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. State Department, declined to comment but warned governments in the region that business cannot continue as usual with Hamas "after the horrific attacks of October 7."

Hamas' possible move to Iraq comes amid stalled Gaza ceasefire negotiations brokered by the United States, Egypt and Qatar. Senior U.S. officials have blamed the Palestinian terrorist group for the lack of progress in the talks.

The Jerusalem Post reported in early June that officials previously faced threats of expulsion from Qatar and punitive measures, including asset freezes, if they did not show greater flexibility in negotiations. These warnings were issued during a meeting in Doha with Qatari and Egyptian mediators, following a visit by William Burns, CIA director and Washington's chief ceasefire mediator.