CAIRO Nov 18 The Palestinian Authority has
asked for an urgent Arab League summit to discuss Israeli
attacks on Gaza, the League said on Sunday.
The authority is headed by Palestinian President Mahmoud
Abbas, whose secular Fatah movement was driven out of Gaza five
years ago by Islamist movement Hamas which now controls the Gaza
Abbas, who is based in the West Bank, has been accused by
some Palestinians of not reacting energetically enough to the
Israeli air strikes against Gaza.
On Saturday, Arab foreign ministers condemned the Israeli
offensive on Gaza and expressed "complete discontent" at the
U.N. Security Council's failure to bring about a ceasefire.
The Arab League was discussing with its members the
Palesinian request, Egyptian state news agency MENA reported.
Seventy-two Palestinians, 21 of them children and several
women have been killed in Gaza since Israel's offensive began.
Rockets fired from Gaza killed three civilians and wounded
The head of the Arab League and a group of Arab foreign
ministers will visit Gaza on Tuesday to show solidarity with
During an emergency meeting on Saturday, Palestinian Foreign
Minister Riad Malki asked the Arab League for an urgent summit
and for "indefinite financial support" from Arab states.
Arab ministers backed Egyptian-led efforts to mediate a truce
between Palestinians and Israelis which are yet to show results.
Israel's declared goal is to deplete Gaza arsenals and force
Hamas to stop rocket fire that has bedevilled Israeli border
towns for years and is now displaying greater range, putting Tel
Aviv and Jerusalem in the crosshairs.
The Israeli military said 544 rockets fired from Gaza have
hit Israel since Wednesday, killing three civilians and wounding
dozens. Some 302 were intercepted and 99 failed to reach Israel
and landed inside the Gaza Strip