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Hamdallah discusses Gaza reconstruction with UN rep

Sept. 1, 2014 9:32 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 3, 2014 2:11 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah met with a representative of the UN's Office for Project Services on Monday to discuss the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip in the wake of the Israeli assault, a statement said.

Hamdallah and UNOPS representative Nick O'Regan discussed plans for reforming Gaza's infrastructure and shipping in construction material.

The Prime Minister said there needed to be full cooperation between the West Bank-Gaza unity government and various international organizations and institutions in order to reconstruct that which was destroyed during the assault.

O'Regan said that the unity government and the international community should work together not only to rebuild Gaza but to transform its infrastructure to improve standards of living for Palestinians in the Strip.

"The critical short-term humanitarian needs (must) have, as much as possible, linkages to longer-term infrastructure network planning," O'Regan said.

Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip ended over seven weeks of fighting last Tuesday with a long-term ceasefire agreement in which Israel agreed to ease its siege on the coastal enclave. Further negotiations regarding unresolved issues such as an airport and seaport in Gaza and the demilitarization of factions in the Strip were to take place in Egypt a month later.

The central committee of the Fatah party on Friday stressed the need to maintain and strengthen Palestinian national reconciliation in order to address the challenges of rebuilding Gaza after more than 50 days of Israeli assault.

An April 23 agreement between Hamas and Fatah paved the way for the formation of a government of national unity for the first time in seven years, but Israel has strongly opposed the deal and severely targeted Hamas in the months that followed.
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