Palestinian boy Youssef, 8, carries bread on a bag as he enters an apartment building where he stays overnight with this father in Beit Hanun, northern Gaza Strip August 14, 2014. (AFP Photo/Roberto Schmidt)
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A fragile cease-fire around Gaza held for a second day Friday as Israel's relations with its U.S. ally showed new signs of strain with tough talks looming on a more lasting peace.Washington denied a report that the White House was tightening the reins on the routine delivery of military aid to Israel over concerns about the proportionality of its military action in Gaza. Gaza's Islamist de facto rulers Hamas, who have representation on the Palestinian negotiating team, insist there can be no return to peace without a lifting of Israel's eight-year blockade of the beleaguered coastal enclave.President Barack Obama's administration, caught off guard as it tried to restrain Israel's campaign in Gaza, has since tightened controls on arms shipments to Israel, the newspaper said, quoting U.S. and Israeli officials.Obama has defended Israel's use of force against rockets fired by Hamas but has repeatedly voiced concern over the civilian death toll in Gaza.
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