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Egypt envoy: Reconciliation will help end Gaza blockade

Dec. 4, 2011 3:22 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 5, 2011 8:46 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Egyptian ambassador to the Palestinian Authority Yasser Othman said Sunday that Palestinian reconciliation will enhance Egypt's efforts to end the blockade on Gaza.

Reconciliation will secure major improvements to the operation of the Rafah crossing linking Egypt and the coastal enclave, Othman said.

Egypt is also considering opening an embassy in the Gaza Strip, he said, adding that all decisions would depend on the implementation of the terms of the reconciliation agreement.

"Egypt will not take any decisions that might maintain disagreement between the Palestinians," the ambassador said, noting that Egypt is focused on completing a national unity deal between Hamas and Fatah.

The two leaders of Palestine's top political factions met at the end of November for the first time since they signed a reconciliation deal in the Egyptian capital in May 2011.

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