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Western foreign ministers to discuss Israel and Gaza at Iran talks

Source: Reuters - Sat, 12 Jul 2014 17:09 GMT
Author: Reuters
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VIENNA, July 12 (Reuters) - British Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Saturday he would discuss with U.S., German and French foreign ministers the need for a ceasefire between the Palestinians and Israelis when they meet on Sunday for talks on Iran's nuclear programme.

"It is clear that we need urgent, concerted international action to secure a ceasefire, as was the case in 2012. I will discuss this with John Kerry, Laurent Fabius and Frank-Walter Steinmeier tomorrow in Vienna," Hague said in a statement.

The ministers are due to hold talks on Sunday afternoon in Vienna to take stock of negotiations with Iran over its nuclear programme ahead of a self-imposed July 20 deadline to secure a deal.

"The current crisis only underlines the need for a fundamental transformation of the situation in Gaza," Hague said after speaking to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

Hague said issues that needed to be addressed included "the restoration of Palestinian Authority control, the opening up of legitimate movement and access and a permanent end to the unacceptable threat of rocket attacks and other forms of violence from Gaza against Israel".

The 15-member United Nations Security Council earlier on Saturday called for de-escalation of the situation, restoration of calm, and reinstitution of the November 2012 ceasefire. (Reporting By John Irish; Editing by Sophie Hares)

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