Hamas on Friday for the first time openly condemned the ongoing terrorism in the Sinai Peninsula.
Hamas official Mousa Abu Marzouk said that he condemns the series of recent terror attacks which he said "undermine our security", according to Yedioth Ahronoth.
Abu Marzouk explained that Hamas has improved its relations with Egypt recently, saying, "We've worked hard to strengthen relations with Egypt which have indeed grown stronger. We are always interested in good relations with Egypt, and in this case only one side could break off the relations. I condemn the events in Sinai.”
He added that Hamas has deployed troops along the border with Egypt since the attacks, adding, according to Yedioth Ahronoth, "We will not allow anyone to cross the border."
He vehemently denied the allegations that Hamas operates in the Sinai and said, "Hamas is putting all its efforts in the fight against Israel."
Abu Marzouk’s condemnation came hours after Hamas dismissed as "propaganda" an Israeli claim that it provided support related to this week's jihadist attacks against Egyptian soldiers in Sinai.
Israeli Major General Yoav Mordechai said in an interview in Arabic with Al-Jazeera television Thursday that Hamas had provided help to "groups supporting IS" for the attacks, claiming also that wounded jihadists had been smuggled into Gaza.
"The occupation's (Israel) statements about Hamas helping IS are stupid accusations… and propaganda that aims to incite against Hamas," spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri told AFP.
"Hamas has made efforts and taken stated measures to secure the border" between the Gaza Strip, which it controls, and Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, he said. "We are intent on (preserving) Egypt's security."
Egypt has long accused Hamas of helping Sinai terrorists by providing weapons for attacks through of its smuggling tunnels under the border to Sinai.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)