‘Prolonged ceasefire impossible without end to siege’

TEHRAN, Aug. 17 (MNA) – A further extension on the ceasefire in the Gaza Strip will not be accepted without “a complete elimination of the siege” in the region, said a Palestinian legislator on Sunday.

Mustafa Barghouti told journalists outside Shifa Hospital in Gaza City that there are talks about presenting the Egyptian ceasefire proposal to the United Nations Security Council.

“This is an issue that has been discussed but there are two things we don’t accept: First is to have constant prolongation of ceasefire without lifting the siege, this would be an Israeli game that will not be accepted,” he said. “Second, that the ceasefire will be violated by Israel whenever it wants,” Barghouti added.

The Palestinian legislator said a complete elimination of the siege can only be achieved “if there is an independent port and an independent passage internationally protected and internationally guaranteed that Israel cannot interfere with.”

A current five-day ceasefire is due to end late on Monday. Negotiations have been going on between Israel and Hamas since early last week in Cairo. They are aimed at ending the latest war between the two sides and improving conditions for Gaza Strip’s 1.8 million people.

Nearly 2,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have been killed and more than 10,000 people have been wounded since the war began 8 July, according to United Nations. In Israel, 67 people have been killed, all but three soldiers.

By Mehr News Agency

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