Head of Arab League discusses permanent ceasefire in Gaza with US official

Ahram Online, Tuesday 12 Aug 2014

Nabil El-Arabi met with US Middle East peace envoy, Frank Lowenstein in continued efforts to reach a lasting ceasefire

Arab League Secretary General Nabil al-Arabi (Photo:Reuters)

Secretary General of the Arab League Nabil El-Arabi is exploring efforts to reach a permanent ceasefire in Gaza with US Middle East peace envoy Frank Lowenstein.

Lowenstein, who is currently visiting Cairo, met with El-Arabi today in an attempt to assist Egypt in the talks to end the more than a month-year old assault on Gaza.

A source told Al-Ahram’s Arabic news website that El-Arabi and Lowenstein discussed the results of the Arab League's emergency meeting that took place on Monday.

El-Arabi said on Monday he has recently contacted several EU officials to put an end to the Israeli occupation and support the Palestinian national unity government.

He said he has also sent a letter to Arab foreign ministers to pave the way for a visit by the ministers to Gaza along with an aid convoy as soon as possible as a show of solidarity for Palestinians.

His comments came on the same day that top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat directly called on him to contact concerned international organisations to deliver aid to Palestinians – whether by land, air or sea.

Palestinian and Israeli delegations on Tuesday were to resume "grueling" negotiations in Cairo aimed at ending the assault on Gaza as Egyptian mediators raced to narrow gaps between both parties.

The fighting since early July has claimed the lives of 1,940 Palestinians and 67 Israelis, 64 of whom  are soldiers.

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