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News Brief


The Palestinian Authority sought to raise $5.5 billion at an international donor conference.

Representatives of some 90 countries convened Monday in Paris for funding talks with P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas.

Abbas’ administration, which is trying to project confidence since rival Hamas Islamists took over the Gaza Strip in June, has said it needs $5.5 billion in aid for West Bank operations. Abbas also was expected to urge Israel to dismantle some of its West Bank checkpoints to ease travel for Palestinians.

Israel has balked at concessions that could jeopardize its security. Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni flew to Paris to argue Jerusalem’s case.

European and Japanese aid funds pledged $800 million, and the United States pledged $550 million, the conference of donors announced. The German government pledged $200 million by 2010.

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