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Kerry hopes for more Gaza pauses

US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) speaks with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (R) and Qatari Foreign Minister Khaled al-Attiyah (up), as they walk down a staircase at the Turkish ambassador's residence in Paris, on July 26, 2014US Secretary of State John Kerry is working for Israel and Hamas to agree to further halts in the Gaza bloodshed ahead of Egyptian-led peace talks, an official said Sunday. Kerry returned to Washington early Sunday after a weeklong mission to the Middle East that failed to reach a permanent ceasefire to stop the 20-day conflict which has killed more than 1,000 people, mostly Palestinian civilians. Just as Kerry returned, Israel announced a resumption of operations after a one-day pause which Hamas — which has been firing rockets into the Jewish state — belatedly accepted. Israel’s security cabinet on Friday rejected a ceasefire proposal and insisted on the need to keep destroying tunnels through which Hamas can infiltrate from the Gaza Strip to carry out attacks.

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