Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Abbas backs Hamas' lift the siege and free prisoners ceasefire demands


Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has backed calls by Hamas for an end to the economic blockade of the Gaza Strip as a condition for a ceasefire.

At least 649 Palestinians and 31 Israelis have been killed in the past 15 days of fighting, officials say.

Israel launched its offensive on 8 July with the declared objective of stopping rocket fire from Gaza.

Meanwhile, several airlines suspended flights to Israel after a rocket from Gaza landed near Ben Gurion airport.

Fighting continued overnight on Tuesday. An air strike in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip left at least five people dead. An Israeli soldier was also killed.

A Palestinian woman whom the BBC filmed being pulled from the rubble of a Gaza blast on Sunday also died from her injuries, her doctor said. Ten of her relatives were killed in the blast. more

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