RAMALLAH, July 23 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry early Wednesday discussed with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas the possibility of reaching a ceasefire to end the bloody fighting in the Gaza Strip.
Kerry phoned Abbas to discuss reaching a truce in Gaza based on the Egyptian ceasefire initiative, Palestinian official news agency Wafa reported.
Late on Tuesday, Abbas said the Israeli offensive on Gaza is meant to undermine the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian national unity and it was time for everyone "to raise their voices against the Israeli killing and destruction machines."
Abbas also said that in the last few days, he visited Egypt, Turkey and Qatar and met with Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi and leaders of Islamic Hamas movement and Islamic Jihad movement, trying to end the bloodshed in the Gaza Strip.
He also pledged to sue Israeli leaders who "committed crimes against the Palestinian people," saying such crimes cannot pass without punishment.
On Tuesday night, the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) executive committee called for an emergency meeting in Cairo of the temporary leadership framework comprising Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements.
In a statement after a meeting chaired by Abbas, the Palestinian leadership said that it would work hard at all levels to reach a ceasefire deal and unify all Palestinian factions under the PLO umbrella.
It also called for massive demonstrations in support of Gaza and its resistance against "the crimes" of the Israeli army.
So far, efforts to mediate a truce in the Gaza Strip have failed.
Earlier in the day, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who is on a visit to Ramallah and Israel, urged the warring sides to end fighting and start negotiation for a ceasefire.
Since Israel launched Operation Protective Edge in the Gaza Strip on July 8, some 631 Palestinians have been killed and around 3,750 injured.
The Israeli side has lost one civilian and 28 soldiers.
RAMALLAH, July 23 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian medical sources said that 70 Palestinians have been killed on Tuesday in a series of Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, bringing the death toll to 631 since Israel started its offensive on the Hamas-ruled territory on July 8, health ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qedra said.
According al-Qedra, 161 children, 66 women and 35 old people were among the casualties. Some 4,000 people have also been injured in the ongoing Israeli military offensive which aims at ending rocket fire into Israel.Full Story