Palestinian president confirms open-ended ceasefire with Israel

Ahram Online, Tuesday 26 Aug 2014

An Egyptian-sponsored truce has been reached between Palestine and Israel after nearly 48 days of Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip

Mahmoud Abbas
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (Photo: Reuters)

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday announced a permanent ceasefire between Israel and Palestine.

The ceasefire came into effect at 7:00pm Cairo time (1600 GMT).

Abbas, in a press conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah, added that the negotiating parties will return to Cairo at the earliest possible opportunity to discuss further points in the truce.

Abbas thanked Egypt for its efforts in reaching a format that satisfies all parties. He also thanked Qatar for assisting in reaching the ceasefire, as well as US Secretary of State John Kerry who was in "constant communication" with all parties.

He further thanked the United Nations who, according to Abbas, will start immediately delivering needed aid to Gaza to restore housing, hospitals, schools and places of worship that were destroyed in the Israeli assault.

Despite the truce, Abbas said that the question of future violence remains.

"What next?" he asked. "Will there be another attack on Gaza?"

Gaza has seen three wars with Israel in the last six years (2008-2009, 2012 and 2014).

Abbas said he has a vision for a permanent solution, which he will discuss with the leadership of Palestine, neighbouring Arab states and the international arena.  



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