Israel, Egyptian Officials Meet to Shore Up Truce With Hamas
Top Israeli and Egyptian officials will meet on Sunday to discuss ways to entrench Israel’s fragile cease-fire with the Gaza Strip’s Hamas rulers after their recent 11-day conflict.
Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi will travel to Egypt to discuss the establishment of a permanent truce, in the first such visit in 13 years. Egypt brokered the cease-fire that went into effect May 21.
Ashkenazi and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry will also discuss humanitarian aid, the reconstruction of the Palestinian territory and the repatriation of the remains of Israeli soldiers missing in action there, Ashkenazi said on Twitter.
Israel’s Army Radio reported earlier that the two will also discuss ways to strengthen the Palestinian Authority, the limited self-rule government in the West Bank that is controlled by Fatah, Hamas’s political adversary. Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by Israel, the U.S. and the European Union.
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In Israel, the head of Egyptian intelligence will meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other officials, Army Radio reported. A main topic for discussion will be Israeli remains and captives held in Gaza and Israel’s conditions for holding indirect talks with Hamas under Egyptian mediation, the report said, citing Israeli officials it didn’t identify.
Egypt is pressing for talks among Israel, Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, the radio report said.
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