Israeli airstrikes attacked areas in the Gaza Strip on October 9. Photo: Reuters

A senior Hamas official, Ali Baraka, stated in an interview broadcast on October 8, 2023, on Russia Today TV and translated into English by The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) that Hamas had been secretly planning the invasion of the south for two years of Israel, even as it pretended to be busy governing the Gaza Strip.

He explained that this is the reason why Hamas did not join the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in its previous round of fighting against Israel. He claimed that Hamas notified its allies in other Palestinian factions, in Hezbollah, in Iran, in Turkey and in Russia only after the invasion began, and declared that any prisoner exchange deal should include Hamas prisoners held in the United States Joined.

Later in the interview, Baraka claimed that Hamas has a license from Russia to locally produce bullets for Kalashnikovs, that Russia sympathizes with Hamas, and that it is satisfied with the war because it relieves American pressure on it in connection with the Ukraine war.