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Hamas has controlled the Gaza Strip since 2007, repeatedly attacking Israel. It has a number of foreign allies. But where does the terror group get the money and supplies to do it? In the past, many German media outlets have referred to Hamas as a radical Islamist organization. Most recently, however, as Israel-Gaza fighting flares up again, media have referred to Hamas as an Islamist terror group. A majority of Western governments, including the European Union and the United States, have classified it as a terror organization. Norway and Switzerland are notable exceptions. Both adopt a strictly neutral position and maintain diplomatic ties with the organization that has governed the Gaza Strip since 2007. Hamas was founded in the 1980s and has been opposed to the late Yasser Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) since its inception. There are claims the Israeli government helped finance Hamas in its early days to build up a counterweight to the PLO — though all actors in question deny Israel played any role in establishing the organization. Unlike the PLO, Hamas does not recognize Israel’s right to exist.

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