On December 12-14, 2014, Hamas celebrated its 27th anniversary with numerous marches and rallies throughout the Gaza Strip, attended by tens of thousands of people. The central rally in the north of the Strip was reportedly attended by nearly 100,000. The anniversary celebrations also included a large military parade by Hamas’ military wing, the ‘Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades.
Senior Hamas officials who spoke at the marches and rallies stressed that the movement would never recognize the Zionist entity or be satisfied with a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders, and called for continuing on the path of resistance and jihad until all of Palestine, from the river to the sea, is liberated. Al-Qassam Brigades spokesman Abu ‘Ubaida thanked Iran for providing Hamas with funds, weapons and missiles and thus helping it to build its army, with its many advanced units. He also declared that Hamas would soon bring about the release of Palestinian prisoners through prisoner-exchange deals.