25 July 2014

Egypt: Sisi - Egyptian Efforts Aim to Cease Fire in Gaza, Prevent Fall of More Victims

President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi received UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond on Thursday 24/07/2014, which comes within the context of the intensive Egyptian efforts to halt blood floods in Gaza.

During the meeting, Sisi reviewed Egyptian efforts to cease fire in Gaza and prevent the fall of more victims.

Speaking about the economic situation, Sisi said Egypt has an ambitious economic plan and is working on reducing the budget deficit and fixing the subsidiary system.

President Sisi noted that plans are underway to issue a set of legislations to attract national, Arab and international investments, especially in the energy and oil and gas exploration sectors.

For his part, Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri said that the Egyptian ceasefire initiative for the Gaza Strip is still on the table.

Speaking at a press conference held jointly with his UK counterpart Philip Hammond Thursday, Shukri said their talks mainly focused on the current crisis in Gaza Strip and the occupied Palestinian lands to end the bloodshed and Israeli military practices.

The current situation in Gaza cannot go on, Shukri said, adding that targeting civilians is unacceptable.

Gaza has been reeling for years from the occupation and Egypt believes the Palestinian people should enjoy appropriate living conditions, Shukri said.

Due to the rising number of victims among civilians, a ceasefire has to be realized to give a chance to negotiations and a push to the peace process for the establishment of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Hammond, for his part, said the cycle of violence in Gaza started when Hamas fired rockets on Israeli cities.

The UK understands Israel's right to defend itself against the attacks but is deeply worried about the worsening crisis and the fall of a huge number of victims, Hammond added.

Hamas has to accept the ceasefire agreement without conditions to protect the Palestinian people, Hammond noted. He added that his talks in Cairo with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri took up other pressing issues, including the situation in Iraq, Syria and Libya.

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