Photo: AP
PM Fayyad
Photo: AP
Qassam near Sderot on Thursday
Photo: Tsafrir Abayov

Fayyad: Israel must open Gaza crossings

Palestinian prime minister calls for reopening of Gaza border crossings shut after rockets hit Israel despite ceasefire

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad Thursday called on Israel to reopen border crossing with the Gaza Strip which were shut after Palestinian rocket attacks violated the shaky truce with Hamas.


"We have 1.5 million of our people with a sense of not having much to lose. That situation must end," Fayyad told a news conference in Prague with Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek.


The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for three rockets fired into southern Israel on Tuesday, which led to Israel shutting down border crossings with the Gaza Strip a day later.


But on Thursday afternoon another Qassam rocket was fired, hitting Sderot's industrial zone. There were no reports of injuries or damage.


The al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, Fatah’s military wing, took responsibility for firing the rocket. Sources in the Gaza Strip believe that the firing was meant to embarrass Hamas and to further erode the truce.


Fayyad said Israel must "fully comply with the undertakings and obligations of the roadmap including especially the requirement of a freeze of settlement activity."


Respect for these undertakings "improve and enhance the credibility of the political process," he added.

Topolanek echoed the demand. "International pressure and pressure from ourselves has been exerted (on Israel) so that new settlements do not take place," he said.


The Czech premier added that Prague would seek to use its relations with Israel and Palestinian leaders to push forward Middle East peace moves during its EU presidency starting in January 2009.


פרסום ראשון: 06.26.08, 16:34
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