President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron on Saturday called for an immediate cessation of hostilities in Gaza and pressed for action that would lead to a permanent ceasefire.

"On Gaza, they condemned the resumption of rocket fire and called for an immediate cessation of hostilities leading to a sustainable ceasefire," the White House said in a statement about the call between the two leaders, during which they also discussed Iraq and Ukraine.

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"President Obama and Prime Minister Cameron reiterated support for Israel's right to self-defense while emphasizing the need for all sides to minimize civilian casualties."

Earlier on Saturday, Obama was quoted in an interview with The New York Times as saying that he doesn't envision the current Israeli and Palestinian leadership making the necessary decisions for peace.

Peace has to start with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Obama told New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman.

In the interview, which appeared in print and on video Friday night, Obama said an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal requires the leadership on both sides “to look beyond tomorrow” and take “the long view on things.”

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