Hamas continues to send rockets into Israel despite a more than one week assault from the Israeli Air Force and Army.
And it is not yet certain that Hamas will relent. What is certain right now is that Israel will not stop its offensive until Hamas stops shooting rockets into Israel.
The Associated Press reported at about 1930 Monday that “the U.S. joined a stream of countries pushing for a cease-fire.”
The International community continues to urge a cease fire but in the UN the US has blocked resolutions demanding that israel stops its attack.
Now France, Britain, Egypt, Turkey and other nations are apparently urging Hamas to relent and stop the rocket attacks.
And Israel will not stop its offensive until Hamas stops the rocket attacks.
“Before the military operation, Hamas targets Israelis whenever it likes and Israel shows restraint,” Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told foreign ministers from the EU. “This is no longer going to be the equation. When Israel is targeted, Israel is going to retaliate.”
French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who unsuccessfully proposed a two-day truce before the land invasion began, was due to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and
France’s President Nicholas Sarkozy Seeks Peace in Gaza
Gaza Cease Fire? Israel Clarifies Tough Stand
From The Associated Press:
In Washington, the State Department said the U.S. was pressing for a cease-fire that would include a halt to rocket attacks and an arrangement for reopening crossing points on the border with Israel, said . A third element would address the tunnels into Gaza from Egypt through which Hamas has smuggled materials and arms.
has spoken by phone with 17 foreign leaders — in Europe as well as the — in pursuit of such a cease-fire agreement, McCormack said, adding that much detailed work remains to be done.
“We’re doing a lot of work on these three elements. The secretary is trying to get the international system and various actors in the international system to coalesce around those three elements,” McCormack said.
President George W. Bush, however, emphasized “Israel’s desire to protect itself.”
“The situation now taking place in Gaza was caused by Hamas,” he said in the Oval Office.
In Damascus, Syria, a senior Hamas official rejected the U.S. proposal.
The deputy head of Hamas’ politburo in Syria, Moussa Abu Marzouk, told The Associated Press the U.S. plan seeks to impose “a de facto situation” and encourages Israel to continue its attacks on Gaza.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who unsuccessfully proposed a two-day truce before the land invasion began, was due to meet Monday withand , who lost control of Gaza to Hamas in June 2007.
While blaming Hamas for causing Palestinian suffering with rocket fire that led to the Israeli offensive, Sarkozy has condemned Israel’s use of ground troops, reflecting general world opinion. Sarkozy and other diplomats making their way to the region are expected to press hard for a cease-fire.
A European Union delegation met withon Monday.
“The EU insists on a cease-fire at the earliest possible moment,” said Karel Schwarzenberg, the foreign minister of the Czech Republic, which took over the EU’s presidency last week. Rocket attacks on Israel also must stop, Schwarzenberg told a joint news conference with Livni.
The EU brought no truce proposals of its own to the region because the cease-fire “must be concluded by the involved parties,” he added.