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Hamas and Iran: New era, new rules

After a cooling of ties following the outbreak of the Arab Spring, Hamas appears to be moving to restore its relations with Iran.

TEHRAN, Iran — Stuck between a biological mother and an adoptive father, the Palestinian Hamas movement has been straining to keep the balance without intimidating any of the two. The Muslim Brotherhood, which Hamas belongs to ideologically, wants the group to keep its distance from Tehran. Meanwhile, Iran, which has provided financing for years, is pushing for warmer relations so that Hamas can once again be counted on to be part of the wider “Resistance Axis,” which also includes the Syrian and Iraqi governments as well as Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement.

On Feb. 9, a senior delegation from Hamas arrived in Tehran to take part in the 37th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in Iran. Politburo members Mohammed Nasr and Osama Hamdan led the Hamas delegation, and both participated in the ceremonies — but that wasn’t all. Nasr and Hamdan seized the opportunity to meet several top Iranian officials including parliament Speaker Ali Larijani and Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Rear Adm. Ali Shamkhani

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