- The Washington Times - Monday, October 14, 2013

The leader of Hamas is taking a select few of his followers to Tehran this week in what’s being billed as a reach-out to Iran for stronger support and for permission to relocate exiled ranks to the country.

The Jerusalem Post reported that the upcoming meeting between Khaled Meshal and his delegation with Iranian leaders will be a worldwide watched event, as international leaders — especially the West — look to newly minted President Hassan Rouhani’s reaction. Mr. Rouhani has set the stage for himself as a more moderate leader than Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. His embrace of Hamas could compromise that label.

Hamas has several leaders in exile in Qatar, Breitbart.com reported. But the Arab League’s recent support of regionwide peace pact has led Hamas to seek a new home for them. The Iranian regime has been a longtime supporter of the terror group, which operates in the Gaza Strip, and has provided members with military assistance, including long-range rockets.

But a stronger Iran-Hamas partnership would set Israel on edge and likely fuel that nation’s call on the international community to crack down more on Tehran’s nuclear development program, military analysts believe, Breitbart.com reported.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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