The Gaza-based terrorist group seeks to become a legitimate part of the Palestinian political system, according to Al-Hayat, and is willing to hand over its weapons to the PLO.

Photo credit: Rahim Khatib, Flash90

Hamas says it is willing to dismantle its military wing if the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) agrees to let Hamas members join, London-based Arabic newspaper Al-Hayat reported on Friday.

According to the report, the unexpected shift in Hamas’ position was the result of the organization realizing it needs to become a legitimate part of the Palestinian political system in the wake of the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

A Hamas leader in Ramallah told Al-Hayat that Hamas seeks to participate in the upcoming PLO Central Council meeting, to which it has been invited, because it understands that it is the most efficient way to block the US and Israel from imposing a peace deal on the Palestinians.

PLO Secretary-General Saeb Erekat said the meeting is expected to produce “fateful” decisions for the future of the Palestinians.