While some ballots for the 2012 U.S. presidential elections were still being counted, leaders in the Arab world already began to congratulate President Barack Obama on his re-election on Wednesday.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas called Obama and said he hoped the president would advance his efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East.
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said that he hoped Obama would support the PA's bid for the upgraded status of a non-member state in the U.N. Erekat also urged the re-elected president to oppose Israeli settlement expansion in Judea and Samaria.
AFP reported that Hamas leaders expressed hope on Wednesday that Obama would change his approach toward the Palestinians in his second term, after what they said was a disappointing approach during his first four years in office. Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said the organization would wait to see if Obama's policies would be more positive this time around, AFP reported. "We hope that Obama commits to legitimate Palestinian rights and stops his policy of double standards and bias towards Israel," he was quoted as saying.
Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi congratulated Obama as well and wished him success in his second term in office.
According to Al-Ahram, Egypt's official news agency, Yasser Ali, a spokesman for Morsi, said the Egyptian people congratulate the Americans on their choice and hope Obama and his administration work to achieve the interests of both the American and Egyptian people.
A spokesman for the main Syrian opposition bloc, the Syrian National Council, expressed hope that the election victory would free Obama to do more to support those trying to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad.
"We hope this victory for President Obama will make him free more to make the right decision to help freedom and dignity in Syria and all over the world," SNC spokesman George Sabra said on the sidelines of an opposition conference on the Qatari capital of Doha.