No sign of Gaza breakthrough as ceasefire nears end
Monday, August 18, 2014 - 01:25
Hours before a five-day truce ends, there is no sign of a breakthrough in talks to end five weeks of hostilities between Israel and Hamas. Mana Rabiee reports.
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Sunrise near the Israeli-Gaza border.
The last day of a five-day truce between Israel and the Palestinians after weeks of hostilities that have left more than 2,000 people dead.
The ceasefire between Israel and Islamist Hamas, brokered by Egypt, ends at midnight local time -- but in Cairo there's no sign of a breakthrough.
With time running out, both sides are entrenched in their demands.
In this area of Gaza that saw heavy fighting, some residents just want the chance to rebuild their homes.
(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT OF SHEJAIA, JABER SUKAR, SAYING:
"I hope that we will have long term truce because as you can see our houses in Shejaia were destroyed. I hope we can help to rebuild the area for these families."
Among other things, Hamas wants the reconstruction of a Gaza sea port and the reopening of an airport destroyed in previous conflicts.
But Israel says those matters should be dealt with at a later stage; Israel's security issues are the bigger priority, it says.
Israel wants Hamas to disarm but Hamas says laying down its weapons is just not an option.
Meanwhile, a Palestinian officials says Israel's position in the talks has only toughened.
And Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that Hamas faces "harsh strikes" if its attacks on Israel resume.
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