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Hamas chief: Holocaust ‘exaggerated

Hamas believes the Holocaust was “exaggerated,” its supreme leader said.

Khaled Meshaal said in a Sky TV interview aired Monday that the numbers were embellished to justify the existence and actions of Israel.

“We don’t deny the Holocaust, but we believe the Holocaust was exaggerated by the Zionist movement to use as a whip,” the Palestinian faction’s leader said.

“We don’t deny the fact but we don’t accept two issues. We don’t accept the exaggeration of numbers and we don’t accept that Israel uses this to do what it wants.”

Though Hamas’ charter calls for the destruction of the Jewish state, Meshaal likened the group’s terrorist and guerrilla attacks to French resistance against the Nazis and the American Revolution.

Meshaal said Hamas has offered Israel a deal in which each side would attack only military targets. Hamas, like many Palestinians, considers Israelis living in the West Bank and east Jerusalem to be “military targets.”

Asked about Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier abducted to Gaza by Hamas in June 2006, Meshaal said he is alive and well and that negotiations on his return are being held up by Israel.

The Israeli government has balked at Hamas’ demand for the release of hundreds of jailed Palestinians, including hard-core terrorists, in exchange for Shalit.

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