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Party official: Gaza factions reject Israel 2-stage truce

Nov. 20, 2012 4:59 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 21, 2012 9:54 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- A Palestinian politician said Tuesday that parties in Gaza reject an Israeli proposal to implement a truce deal in two stages.

Palestinian People's Party official Walid al-Awad said Israel is asking for a halt to rockets for 48 hours in exchange for stopping airstrikes as a first stage of a truce deal.

In the second stage, Israel promised to study factions' other demands, including lifting the blockade, stopping all military operations, and ending the targeting of Palestinian fishermen off Gaza's coast, al-Awad said.

The politician said Israel's two-stage proposal will only afford it more time to assassinate Hamas leaders. The current bombardment of Gaza was sparked by Israel's killing of a top Hamas military official.

The two stages must be implemented at the same time, al-Awad said.

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