Egypt Hosts Gaza Truce Talks

Arab bulwark pitches ceasefire to Hamas, Islamic Jihad
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 6, 2008 12:44 PM CST
A Palestinian woman looks out from a shop door, during clashes between Palestinian youths and Israeli troops in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, Tuesday, March 4, 2008. (AP Photo/Kevin Frayer)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Egypt has begun talks with Hamas and Islamic Jihad in an attempt to broker an end to rocket attacks on Israel and retaliatory Israeli raids in Gaza, Reuters reports. A ceasefire would make it easier for Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas to resume peace talks with Israel. Leaders of the groups met with officials in Egypt today, but were noncommittal, except to say they'd study Egypt's proposal.

“The Zionist enemy must end all forms of aggression against our people in Gaza and the West Bank and lift the siege on Gaza,” said an Islamic Jihad leader. But Egypt, the first Arab country to make peace with Israel, provides a glimmer of hope “that all Palestinian factions in Gaza will cooperate,” a Palestinian negotiator said.