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Arab League accuses Israel of 'blocking' Gaza peace efforts

Ahram Online and AFP, Wednesday 20 Aug 2014
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A general view shows Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat and Arab League Chief Nabil el-Araby during the meeting at the Arab League in Cairo August 11, 2014. (Photo:Reuters)
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Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi accused Israel on Wednesday of "blocking" all attempts to end the Gaza conflict, a day after the collapse of a ceasefire in the Palestinian territory.

"Israel is blocking any kind of agreement leading to calm" in the Gaza Strip, Arabi told journalists.

"The Arab League wants to reach a permanent truce as soon as possible," he said before flying off to Geneva for a meeting with the International Committee of the Red Cross to demand protection of Palestinian civilians.

In a press statement issued on Wednesday morning, Egypt's foreign ministry expressed "deep regret" over the resumption of armed confrontations between Palestinian factions and Israel in the warn-torn Gaza Strip.

Cairo warned that the new clashes will "definitely lead to more casualties and injuries among innocent civilians.

"Eight days of calm under an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire exploded into violence late Tuesday as Israeli warplanes pounded Gaza in retaliation for cross-border rocket attacks.

More than 2,030 Palestinians have been killed and 67 people have died on the Israeli side since July 8 when the Israeli assault on Palestine started.

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