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U.S. backs three-part cease-fire in Gaza

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Bush administration supports a three-pronged cease-fire in the Gaza Strip.

A State Department spokesman told reporters Monday that any cease-fire must include a halt to Hamas rocket fire into Israel and an arrangement for reopening crossing points on the border with Israel, The Associated Press reported.

Such an agreement also would stop the smuggling of arms into Gaza through tunnels in Egypt, said spokesman Sean McCormack.

The United States, along with Britain, rejected a United Nations Security Council draft agreement over the weekend that called for an immediate cease-fire and expressed concern about Israel’s operation. The statement, which had been submitted by Libya representing the Arab League, made no mention of Hamas rocket attacks on Israel.

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