Hamas, Islamic Jihad, to attend Cairo talks on Gaza truce

Ahmed Eleiba , Friday 1 Aug 2014

File Photo: Hamas' deputy leader, Moussa Abu Marzouk, and Fatah representative Azzam Al-Ahmad in Cairo on April 27, 2011 (Photo: Reuters)

Members of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), Hamas and Islamic Jihad will attend truce talks in Cairo on Friday over the ongoing Gaza war.

Egypt's foreign ministry announced on Friday that Israel and the Palestinians Authority would send delegates to Cairo for truce talks after both sides agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire in Gaza.

The Palestinian delegation will examine the possibilities of developing the Egyptian initiative for a ceasefire aimed at ending the violence in the Gaza Strip, underway since 8 July.

"Egypt emphasises the importance of both sides committing to the ceasefire so the negotiations can take place in a favourable atmosphere," the Egyptian foreign ministry said in a statement.

Palestinian sources told Ahram Online that the PLO will be represented by Azzam Al-Ahmed, Maged Farag (Fatah); Maher Taher (The Popular Front); Kees Abdel Karem (Democratic Front) and Basem Al-Salhi (People's Party).

Five leading figures will represent Hamas, including Moussa Abu Marzouq, Emad Al-Alami, Khalel Al-Hayah, Ezzat Al-Rasheq and Mohamed Nasr.

Ziad Al-Nakhala and Khaled Al-Batch will represent Islamic Jihad.

The death toll from the Israeli offensive in Gaza has reached over 1450 Palestinians, with 5,000 homes destroyed and around a quarter of a million civilians displaced.

The enclave’s infrastructure, including its power and water supply, has also been damaged in the violence.

The temporary ceasefire, announced in a joint US-UN declaration, stared at 0500 GMT on Friday. The ceasefire was a compromise after Hamas rejected an Egyptian initiative earlier in July for a durable truce followed by talks.

The Islamist movement had demanded guarantees that Israel would end its eight-year blockade of Gaza before it agreed to a cessation of violence.


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