Abu Obeida, spokesman for Hamas' Qassam Brigades, March 26, 2010
Hamas' Qassam Brigades, March 26, 2010 Photo by AP
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Hamas condemned U.S. President Barack Obama's speech to AIPAC on Sunday, saying it will not recognize Israel despite U.S. demands.

In his second Mideast speech, Obama reaffirmed U.S. support for Israel and called on the Gaza-rulers to recognize Israel's right to exist, as well as free abducted Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit. He also condemned the recent Fatah-Hamas reconciliation agreement.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri was quoted by Ma'an news agency as saying that Obama's speech showed the U.S. government will continue "to support the occupation at the expense of the freedom of the Palestinian people."

Moreover, Abu Zuhri emphasized that the U.S. "will fail" in forcing Hamas "to recognize the occupation."

Hamas leader Ismail Radwan said that Obama gave in to the Israeli position at the expense of the Palestinian people and their rights.

"It's clear the Obama administration is working only to secure the safety of the Zionist entity… it's clear the U.S. isn't speaking about 1967 borders nor a Palestinian state," Radwan said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Obama's AIPAC speech Sunday, saying he is "determined" to work with the U.S. president to advance peace.

The Palestinian Authority is set to discuss Obama's policy speeches on Wednesday.