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Three reasons behind rare China-Hamas meeting in Qatar

From the location to the timing and the messaging, the China-Hamas meeting on Sunday underscored Beijing's messaging and approach to the Gaza war without, however, elevating its role to a broker in the conflict.
Wang Kejian (left) meets Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar on Oct. 17, 2023. - Hamas via Telegram

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The ancient Chinese proverb “listen to all, plucking a feather from every passing goose, but follow no one” can be a guiding principle in understanding the Hamas-China meeting that took place in Doha on Sunday.

The meeting saw the head of the group's political bureau, Ismail Haniyeh, receive Chinese diplomat Kejian Wang at the end of a regional tour undertaken by the Chinese emissary. 

As Beatrice Farhat reports, this is the first such high-level meeting for Hamas with Chinese officials since the Gaza war. The Times of London called it “unprecedented.” 

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