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Antony Blinken, Egypt

Blinken in Mideast on mission to shore up Israel-Palestine ceasefire

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken lands in Jordan on the last leg of his Mideast tour that aims to consolidate an Egypt-brokered ceasefire between Israel and Palestine

5/26/2021 7:16:00 PM

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken lands in Jordan on the last leg of his Mideast tour that aims to consolidate an Egypt -brokered ceasefire between Israel and Palestine

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken lands in Jordan on the last leg of his tour aimed at consolidating a ceasefire that ended the worst Israeli bombardment in years on besieged Gaza .

Fuel to 'Palestinian division'In Gaza, Hamas leader Yehiyeh Sinwar told journalists on Wednesday that the group welcomed international reconstruction aid, as long as it did not come from Israel, and had no objections to international oversight.

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"I emphasise our commitment in Hamas that we will not take a single penny earmarked for rebuilding or humanitarian issues," he said."When I said we do not take money destined for aid, this is because we have comfortable sources of funds covering our activities," he said.

He also lashed out at Blinken for trying to strengthen the Palestinian Authority at Hamas' expense. "They are trying to add more fuel to the fire of Palestinian division," Sinwar said.READ MORE: The U.S. is providing more than $360 million of urgent support for the Palestinian people. We will galvanize the international community to make more aid available for humanitarian and development efforts.

— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken)Restoring US aidBlinken announced nearly $40 million in additional aid to the Palestinians. In all, the Biden administration has pledged some $360 million to the Palestinians, restoring badly needed aid that the Trump administration had cut off.

The truce that ended the Israeli attacks on Friday has so far held, but it did not address any of the deeper issues plaguing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Those challenges include a hawkish Israeli leadership that seems unwilling to make major concessions, Palestinian divisions, years of mistrust and deeply rooted tensions surrounding occupied Jerusalem and its holy sites.

READ MORE: US resumes aid to Palestinians severed under TrumpTenuous truceThe truce remains tenuous since tensions are still high in Jerusalem and the fate of the Palestinian families is not yet resolved.On Wednesday, an Israeli court heard arguments from a Palestinian family trying to block their expulsion in Silwan, another occupied east Jerusalem neighbourhood targeted by illegal Israeli settlers.

"The settlers want to take my house, to steal my house with their fake papers," said Kaet Abdel Fath el Rajabi, who said his family has lived in the building for 60 years. Several dozen protesters stood outside the courthouse in support of the family.

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In his remarks after his meeting with Blinken on Tuesday, Netanyahu hardly mentioned the Palestinians, warning of a "very powerful" response if Hamas breaks the ceasefire while expressing support for economic development in the West Bank.Blinken repeatedly affirmed what he said was Israel's right to defend itself. 

But he also called on leaders of all sides to chart a "better course" in hopes of laying the groundwork for peace talks aimed at establishing an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. Read more: TRT World »

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Hypocrites. Funding Israel then try to play the peace maker.