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Hamas talks truce as death toll climbs past 500

Source: Reuters - Mon, 21 Jul 2014 21:34 PM
Author: Reuters
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High security along the border with Gaza as the death toll climbed above 500. Israeli forces were on the move ---- their advance --- backed by jets and tank fire.

They pounded this neighborhood near the southern border --- wounded civilians had to evacuate --- including children. Injuries weren't confined to Gaza --- Israeli forces suffered several injuries as Hamas fired across the border.

By late afternoon, the Islamist group's deputy chief had, had enough.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) DEPUTY HAMAS CHIEF ISMAIL HANIYEH, SAYING:

"Gaza is a graveyard for the invaders ."

Ismail Haniyeh called for a ceasefire with these terms.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) DEPUTY HAMAS CHIEF ISMAIL HANIYEH, SAYING:

"The aggression must be stopped and a guarantee should be given it would not be repeated. The blockade must be lifted, this unjust blockade that our Palestinian people are living in."

His call for a ceasefire came in the wake of many calls from the West for an end to the violence - and as Washington dispatched its top diplomat to Egypt to try and broker a truce.

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