AP Photo/John Locher
Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley calls on Egypt, Qatar, Iran, and Turkey to provide refuge for Palestinians fleeing Gaza, emphasizing the need for broader regional support.

By Troy O. Fritzhand, Algemeiner

US presidential candidate Nikki Haley said on Thursday that Egypt as well as “pro-Hamas countries” Qatar, Iran, and Turkey should take in Palestinians fleeing the war in Gaza.

“They should be going to the Rafah gate and Egypt [should] take them,” Haley a Republican, said in an interview with ABC News when asked where fleeing Gazans should go. “I’ve always said that what you should have is that they should go to pro-Hamas countries — Qatar, Iran, Turkey.”

Iran is the main international sponsor of Hamas, which rules Gaza.

Meanwhile, Qatar and Turkey host senior Hamas officials and, together with Iran, have provided an enormous portion of the Palestinian terrorist group’s budget in recent years.

Haley, who previously served as US ambassador to the United Nations during the Trump administration, argued that Egypt, which borders Gaza, has refused to take refugees from the Palestinian enclave due to security concerns.

“Why won’t Egypt take them? Because they don’t trust which ones are terrorists and which ones aren’t,” she said. “It’s a sad state of affairs, but the reality of that evil is very clear in Arab countries too.

Arab countries have very much always been cautious and know the threats that Iran can place.”

Haley added that countries in the region don’t want “those terrorist proxies coming after them” before asking why the onus hasn’t been more on Egypt due its geography and other states due to their support for Hamas to help Palestinians in Gaza.

“Why isn’t everybody talking to Egypt? Why aren’t they talking to Turkey? Why aren’t they talking to Qatar? Why aren’t they talking to Iran?” she asked. “Why aren’t they doing something to help the Palestinians? Why is it that you come back to Israel and the US? It’s always the case.”

Haley, an underdog in the 2024 Republican presidential primary to frontrunner Donald Trump, has been an outspoken supporter of Israel throughout the race.

Haley’s comments followed reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had previously asked US President Joe Biden in the early days of the Israel-Hamas war to pressure Egypt to take in Palestinians, something the Muslim-majority country refused to do.

Biden said in an interview with CBS’ 60 Minutes in October that the Israeli resettlement of Gaza would be “a big mistake.”

Netanyahu also extended his request of pressuring Egypt to French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak during their recent visits to Israel, Hebrew media outlets reported on Friday. Both leaders rejected the request.

Egypt has been clear that it opposes any relocation of Palestinians into its territory, including the large Sinai Desert.

In October, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi said that he “rejects any attempt to resolve the Palestinian issue by military means or through the forced displacement of Palestinians from their land, which would come at the expense of the countries of the region,” claiming that was Israel’s goal.

Other Arab states, such as the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, have issued similar statements.