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Hamas chief: Durable truce must lead to lifting Gaza blockade

Aug. 10, 2014 9:47 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 24, 2014 10:35 P.M.)
DOHA, Qatar (AFP) -- A lasting truce must lead to the lifting by Israel of its blockade of the Gaza Strip, Hamas chief Khalid Mashaal said in an interview in Doha on Sunday.

The 72-hour ceasefire Hamas reached with Israel on Sunday "is one of the ways or tactics to ensure successful negotiations or to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza," said Meshaal.

The final "goal we insist on is having the demands of Palestinians met and the Gaza Strip exist without a blockade".

"We insist on this goal. In the case of Israeli procrastination or continued aggression, Hamas is ready with other Palestinian factions to resist on ground and politically and... to face all possibilities," he said.

The remarks by Meshaal, who lives in exile in Qatar, come as Israeli and Palestinian negotiators on Sunday accepted an Egyptian proposal for a 72-hour ceasefire in Gaza from one minute past midnight local time.
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