BEIRUT

Middle East

Obama speaks to Israel's Netanyahu amid ceasefire

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a cabinet meeting in Tel Aviv August 10, 2014. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

EDGARTOWN, Massachusetts: President Barack Obama has been consulting by phone with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a 72-hour cease-fire in the Gaza Strip nears expiration.

Obama foreign policy aide Ben Rhodes says that Obama talked to Netanyahu Wednesday from his vacation home on Martha's Vineyard of the Massachusetts coast.

Palestinian negotiators are mulling over an Egyptian proposal to end the month-long Israel-Hamas war. Since a temporary truce went into effect Sunday, Israel has halted military operations in the coastal territory and Gaza militants have stopped firing rockets. It expires at midnight.

The cease-fire was meant to give the parties time to negotiate a more sustainable truce and a roadmap for the coastal territory.

Rhodes says the White House will provide a fuller readout of the Netanyahu call later in the day.

 

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