El-Sisi discusses Gaza crisis with UN chief

Ahram Online , Thursday 10 Jul 2014

President El-Sisi discusses the latest developments in Gaza with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon

Smoke and debris rise after an Israeli strike on the Gaza
Smoke and debris rise after an Israeli strike on the Gaza Strip seen from the Israeli side of the Israel-Gaza Border, Wednesday, July 9, 2014 (Photo: AP)

President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi discussed the situation in Gaza with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon Wednesday.

They agreed in a phone call that all military measures should be halted in order to stop the escalation in Gaza, according to a statement by the Egyptian presidency.

They also agreed to work to prevent the situation from escalating and causing more loss of life, the statement added.

On Tuesday, Israel launched an operation against Gaza in retaliation for the abduction and murder of the three Jewish teens in the occupied West Bank. That was followed by the abduction and murder of a Palestinian teenager in Jerusalem.

Both El-Sisi and Ban Ki-Moon agreed to encourage Israeli and Palestinian sides to reach a truce and adopt the necessary measures for helping the civilian population in the Gaza Strip.

In a press conference Wednesday in The Hague, the UN secretary general stated that he spoke with a number of Middle East as well world leaders, including Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, US Secretary of State John Kerry, and several others, including the secretary generals of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Arab League. 

He also stated that in his talks with President El-Sisi he called on the government of Egypt to urgently open its Rafah crossing for humanitarian purposes, to help alleviate the suffering in Gaza.

On Thursday, Egypt opened the Rafah border with Gaza to receive Palestinians gravely injured in North Sinai hospitals.

Egypt is currently holding talks with both warring parties in order to prevent a further escalation of Israeli military operations, the Egyptian presidency statement added.

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