Hamas sets terms for ceasefire with Israel

Hamas publicly set its terms on Wednesday for a ceasefire with Israel, calling for an end to Israeli raids in Palestinian territory and a reopening of Gaza border crossings.

Hamas sets terms for ceasefire with Israel
Egypt has been trying to broker a truce.

"There must be a commitment by Israel, to end all its aggression against our people, assassinations, killings and raids, and lift the (Gaza) siege and reopen the crossings," Hamas's Gaza leader Ismail Haniyeh said in a speech.

A ceasefire deal, he said, should be "reciprocal, comprehensive and simultaneous" and apply both to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

"We will not abandon you, our people in the West Bank," Haniyeh said. "Aggression against you is aggression against us."

There was no immediate Israeli comment on Haniyeh's remarks.

He delivered the address several hours after Israeli troops killed an Islamic Jihad fighter in the occupied West Bank, an incident which a Hamas official said showed that Israel was not interested in calm.

A deal to reopen crossings could also include a prisoner exchange involving Palestinians held in Israeli jails and an Israeli soldier seized in Gaza in 2006.

Agencies
Last Mod: 12 Mart 2008, 18:10
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