Amid Raging Conflict, Hamas Flees Damascus

Hamas leaders, including chief of the politburo Khaled Meshal, left the organization’s longtime headquarters in Damascus, the New York Times reported on Friday, amid persisting tensions in Syria as the regime of Bashar Assad clashes with opposition forces.

The report came ahead of a Meshal’s planned visit to Jordan, his first official trip to the csince his expulsion 13 years ago, and following an official announcement according to which he will step down as the group’s leader pending an upcoming vote.

Meshal, has been Hamas’ leader since 2004, when Israel killed the group’s founder Ahmed Yassin and leader Abdel Aziz Rantisi.

Speaking with the New York Times on Friday, a Hamas official in Gaza said that the group’s leaders left the Syrian capital since “the situation there does not allow the leadership to be present.”

“There are no more Hamas leaders in Damascus,” the official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told the New York Times.

For more, go to

Written by


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Amid Raging Conflict, Hamas Flees Damascus

Thank you!

This article has been sent!