Middle East

Palestinians: Committed to reaching deal in Cairo

People look at a crater on the ground and damaged buildings, that witnesses said was caused by an Israeli airstrike, in the Zeitoun neighborhood in Gaza City August 8, 2014. (REUTERS/Siegfried Modola)

CAIRO: A senior Palestinian official said a team negotiating in Cairo for a cease-fire agreement with Israel is committed to reaching a deal.

"We told the Egyptians (mediators) we are sitting here to achieve a final agreement that restores the rights" of Palestinians, delegation head Azzam al-Ahmed told reporters.

The Egyptian foreign ministry said progress had been made before a 72-hour truce ended Friday morning with the resumption of hostilities.

Hamas and the Islamic Jihad group in the Gaza Strip had rejected a call for another 72-hour truce, accusing Israel of stalling.

"There had been an agreement on the vast majority of matters that are important to the Palestinian people, but some limited points remained undecided, a matter that should have led to an acceptance to renew the cease-fire," the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The statement called for "an immediate return to a cease-fire."





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