Hamas re-elects Mashaal as its leader

FILE - In this this Aug. 29, 2009 file photo, Khaled Mashaal, Hamas leader, center, attends his father's funeral at a Mosque in Amman, Jordan. Senior Hamas figures gathered for the last stage of internal elections on Monday in Cairo, where two officials in the Islamic militant movement said a new leader may be announced later in the day. Qatar-based Mashaal, who has run the Palestinian movement since 1996, is seen as the front-runner. Mashaal, 56, is backed by regional powers Qatar, Turkey and Egypt. (AP Photo/Nader Daoud, File)CAIRO (AP) — The Islamic militant group Hamas on Monday re-elected longtime leader Khaled Mashaal, officials said, choosing a relative pragmatist who has sparred with movement hardliners in the past over his attempt to reconcile with Western-backed Palestinian rivals.

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