EU holds talks with Egypt, Palestinians on Gaza

By
January 25, 2009 23:27

 
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European Union foreign ministers pressed Egypt on Sunday to do more to prevent weapons from being smuggled to Hamas in the Gaza Strip - a problem undermining efforts to cement a durable truce in the Mideast. The EU's 27 foreign ministers sought support from their Jordanian and Turkish counterparts in talks meant to help create a lasting cease-fire following Israel's 22-day offensive. The critical question facing the EU is whether Hamas will go along with any peace initiative - and what incentives might be offered to Egypt to deter arms smuggling along its porous Gaza border. "We know the cease-fire is very fragile," British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said. "Action is required to prevent the illegal trafficking of arms into Gaza. It's required to address the terrible humanitarian situation in Gaza, including the opening of [border] crossings." Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said the EU could send more monitors to help police Egypt's several official border crossings with Gaza.

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