Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has outrightly rejected Hamas softening its stance against his country by symbolically tossing the Palestinian Islamist group's recently published policy paper into the bin.

The paper offered to drop Hamas' longstanding call for Israel's destruction but maintained that it still rejected the Jewish state's right to exist. The Palestinian group also continued to back the "armed struggle" against Israel.

In a 97-second video clip posted on social media on Sunday (7 May), Netanyahu said that news outlets had been taken in by the "fake news", describing it as a complete "distortion of the truth".

In the clip Netanyahu called the policy paper a "hateful document", and claimed that Hamas was lying to the world. He then crumpled up the document and tossed it into a wastepaper bin.

"The new Hamas document says that Israel has no right to exist, it says every inch of our land belongs to the Palestinians, it says there is no acceptable solution other than to remove Israel ... they want to use their state to destroy our state," the prime minister said.

Netanyahu said that moving away from calling for "the genocide of all Jews to calling just for the annihilation of Israel - is that progress or moderation?"

"Hamas murders women and children, it's launched tens of thousands of missiles at our homes, it brainwashes Palestinian kids in suicide kindergarten camps," he added.

Hamas, which was founded in 1987, is an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood - the banned Egyptian Islamist movement.

Classified as terrorist group

The group has, in addition to fighting three wars with Israel since 2007, carried out hundreds of armed attacks in Israel and Israeli-occupied territories.

It is classified as a terrorist group in some Western countries over its failure to renounce violence, recognise Israel's right to exist and accept existing interim Israeli-Palestinian peace agreements.

The group updated its 1988 founding document, aimed at bridging internal divisions between Gaza and the West Bank and to end its international isolation as a terrorist group.

Hamas controls the Gaza Strip while Fatah, through the Palestinian National Authority, controls the West Bank. Hamas seized Gaza from the Palestinian Authority in 2007 and despite several attempts reconciliation between the two authorities has failed.

Hamas elected its new leader Ismail Haniyeh on Saturday (6 May) replacing long-time leader Khaled Meshaal.