A senior European Union official returned from the Middle East on Monday sounding pessimistic about the chance of a cease-fire between Israel and Hezbollah militants, and the EU said it was considering the deployment of peacekeepers.
Javier Solana, the EU's foreign and security chief, said the best that could be hoped for was a "de-escalation" of the fighting.
He was to brief a meeting of EU foreign ministers on his weekend talks in Beirut.
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