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Bildt calls for Gaza borders to open

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13:48 CET+01:00
Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt has called for an immediate ceasefire and full humanitarian access to under-siege Gaza after a meeting with EU foreign ministers in Paris on Tuesday.

Carl Bildt attended the meeting of European foreign ministers at the Quai d'Órsay in Paris on Tuesday evening and confirmed that he hopes that a ceasefire will be imposed in Gaza "within the next couple of days."

"We want to open all the border posts and gain complete humanitarian access to Gaza. It is essential," Bildt said to the Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet (Sv).

Israeli on Wednesday however rejected a French-British proposal for a 48-hour ceasefire arguing that the plan made few demands of Hamas, a group classified as a terrorist organisation by the Swedish and other EU governments.

Bildt pointed out that contact with Hamas could be made via Egypt but said it "remained to be seen" whether this would happen, saying the group was responsible for breaching the ceasefire. He also underlined that a political agreement was the only way to ending 60 years of conflict in Gaza.

"If Israel is not even able to guarantee the security of its civilians it is doubtful if the EU could. The only thing that can guarantee the security of civilians is a political agreement," Bildt said to SvD.se.

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