In an interview, Mahmoud al-Zahar acknowledged there were differences within Hamas on the issue of recognizing Israeli sovereignty, "But the big majority supports the resistance" to a two-state solution.
"We will never recognize Israel," Zahar said. "The Zionists have occupied our land like the Nazis did with France during the Second World War. Israel is a foreign element in the Middle East. Why don't the Jews establish their state in Europe?"
Asked by the magazine about Palestinian Prime Minister Nasser al-Shaer's views that an indirect recognition of Israel is possible, Zahar was instantly dismissive.
"That is his personal opinion and not the position of the government," Zahar said.