Israel’s Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has reiterated her government’s rejection of a French proposition for a 48-hour ceasefire.
Holding talks in Paris with President Nicolas Sarkozy, Livni said there was no humanitarian crisis in Gaza so no need for a humanitarian truce. Speaking to reporters outside the Elysee Palace, she explained how Israel views its actions, outlining what she called a “dual strategy.” “Israel is working with the pragmatic leadership in the Palestinian Authority in order to reach a peace treaty while simultaneously we need to address Hamas,” she said. “The only way to see a change in the region is to help the moderates but simultaneously to attack and to keep the pressure on the extremists like Hamas.” Diplomatic efforts to end the conflict are to include separate Middle East missions led by Sarkozy and by the new EU President, the Czech Republic. Hamas meanwhile has firmly denied earlier reports that it had conditionally agreed to the truce proposals.