An Egyptian official said Thursday that Cairo, which is in contact with Hamas and other Palestinian factions, is helping Israel gather information that might lead to the three teenagers kidnapped last week.

However, the official, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, denied Israeli and Palestinian media reports that Egyptian mediation was already under way to return the boys.

"There is a flow of information (between Egypt and Israel), but we are still short of information, so there is no negotiation," the official said.

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