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Qatari emir calls for Gaza ceasefire in talks with Blinken

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-01-08 05:17
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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Qatar's Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani attend a press conference, in Doha, Qatar, Jan 7, 2024. [Photo/Agencies]

DOHA -- The Qatari emir stressed the need for an immediate ceasefire during his meeting on Sunday with the visiting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani stressed the necessity of working towards an immediate ceasefire and protecting civilians, a sufficient and sustainable humanitarian aid delivery into all areas of the Gaza Strip, and working to reduce the escalation to ensure stability and security in the region, reported Qatar News agency.

Later in the day, Qatar's Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani held a press conference in Doha with Blinken.

The prime minister of Qatar told reporters that the recent killing of a senior Hamas leader has impacted Qatar's mediation efforts in the Israel-Hamas conflict, while Qatar remains committed to continuing its mediation efforts.

He also emphasized that hostile actions in the Red Sea are unacceptable, constituting unfortunate consequences of the Gaza conflict.

For his part, Blinken stated that he would raise the issue of protecting civilians during his upcoming visit to Israel, adding that Palestinian civilians must be allowed to return to their homes and should not be forced to leave Gaza.

Blinken is currently on a tour of several Middle Eastern countries, seeking to de-escalate the situation in the wake of the killing of a senior Hamas leader, which has further intensified the crisis in the region.

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