Member of Parliament for Central Machchangolhi and former President Mohamed Nasheed lauded Hamas’ quest for freedom and the unwavering spirit and perseverance of the Palestinian people during parliamentary deliberations on Monday.

While Western nations and the United States list Hamas as a terrorist organisation, Nasheed, during the parliamentary debate on a proposed ban of Israeli travellers and imports to the Maldives, said the world’s efforts to exclude Hamas from the current discourse in finding a resolution to the conflict was wrong . The resolution was summitted to Parliament by Villingili MP Saud Hussain in response to the ongoing Israeli offensive in Gaza, which has been under Israeli military blockade since 2006.

“Years later we saw Hamas overwhelm Israel’s defence and infiltrate Israel again. Three years ago the whole world was excluding Hamas. All Arab countries were establishing relations with Israel. The goal was to exclude Hamas,” Nasheed said, pointing to the 2001 war by Hamas to drive Israeli troops out of Gaza.

Describing Hamas’ jihad against Israel as a struggle for freedom, Nasheed said the effort cannot be stopped.

Nasheed remarked that Western powers are now objecting to Israel’s disproportionate use of force, targeting of hospitals, and the killing of civilians, including children, under the guise of eliminating Hamas.

“Hamas cannot be eliminated. It cannot be destroyed. Humanity is showing us every day that it is not going to happen however much Israel and all Western powers may try. The spirit of freedom, Honourable Speaker, cannot be destroyed,” Nasheed said.

“The Palestinian people’s jihad, their fight, is a universal struggle. It’s not solely the fight of Palestinians; it is a collective struggle for all of humanity,” he added.