Report: Egypt pushes Europe to talk to Hamas

Fatah supporters take part in a rally in the West Bank city of Nablus as unitytalks with Hamas take place in Cairo on Feb. 25, 2009.
CAIRO (Ma’an) — Egypt is working to establish communications between Hamas and European nations in the wake of their
brokering of a prisoner swap deal between the Gaza rulers and Israel, Egyptian daily Al-Mesryoon said Thursday.

Officials hope to build on European contacts with Hamas during the swap negotiations, including by German and French
mediators, to convince European states to deal with the faction governing Gaza, the report said.

Egypt wants Europeans to pressure Israel to lift the blockade on the Gaza Strip as a result of talking to Hamas, the paper added.
Israel tightened its siege on the coastal strip in 2006 after Gaza militants kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

When Shalit was returned on Tuesday under the Cairo-brokered deal, Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzouq said Israel agreed to lift the blockade as part of the agreement.

( / 22.10.2011)

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