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Gaza PM arrives in Tunisia

Jan. 5, 2012 10:01 A.M. (Updated: Jan. 6, 2012 1:16 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh arrived in Tunisia on Thursday, as part of his first international tour since Israel tightened the siege on the coastal strip.

The Hamas premier will spend two days in the country whose revolution sparked the Arab Spring, before returning to the Gaza Strip, Foreign Minister in Haniyeh's government Muhammad Awad told Ma'an.

Haniyeh left Gaza last Sunday for the first time since Hamas seized power of the coastal enclave in 2007 and Israel tightened a land and sea blockade on the 1.7 million-strong population.

The premier has toured Egypt, Sudan, and Turkey and officials said earlier he might stop off in the Gulf. "He will return at a later date to Qatar and the Gulf countries in another visit," Awad said.

Haniyeh's visit aims to break the political blockade and connect with the Arab world over the Palestinian cause and ending the siege on Gaza, Awad added.
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