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Sisi Defends Egypt Peace Efforts for Gaza

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Wednesday defended Egypt's role in trying to broker a Gaza truce between Israel and Hamas, which accuses him of proposing a ceasefire favorable to Israel.

Unlike his Islamist predecessor Mohammed Morsi whom he toppled and detained last year, ex-army chief Sisi has sought to isolate the militant Palestinian movement in the neighboring Gaza Strip.

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Kerry Urges Hamas to Accept Truce, Ban Calls on Parties to 'Stop Fighting, Start Talking'

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon demanded Tuesday that Israel and Hamas halt spiraling violence in Gaza as he pushed diplomatic efforts to end bloodshed that has killed more than 620 Palestinians.

Following top-level truce talks in Cairo, the U.N. secretary-general headed to Israel to deliver his message in person as the 15-day conflict showed no sign of easing.

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U.S. Condemns Attack on Egyptian Soldiers

The United States on Monday condemned a weekend attack on an Egyptian border checkpoint which left 21 soldiers dead, and vowed to keep up support for Egypt's security.

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In Cairo, Ban Says Gaza 'Violence Must Stop Now'

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon demanded an immediate end to the raging conflict in Gaza and Israel on Monday, during a visit to Cairo to push for a ceasefire.

The "violence must stop, it must stop now," Ban said at a news conference.

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Egypt Summons Turkish Envoy over Gaza Criticism

Egypt's foreign ministry on Sunday summoned Turkey's charge d'affaires over criticism of Cairo's handling of the war between Israel and Hamas in neighboring Gaza.

Turkey and Egypt withdrew their ambassadors last year after the military ousted Egyptian Islamist president Mohammed Morsi, who had forged closer ties with Turkey's devout premier, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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Egypt Court Cuts Jail Term of Prominent Activist

An Egyptian appeals court in Alexandria on Sunday reduced a two-year jail sentence for award-winning activist Mahienour el-Massry for holding an illegal protest to six months, her lawyer said.

After the army ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi last July, the authorities launched a harsh crackdown on both Islamists and the secular opposition.

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Kuwait Calls for End to Gaza Bloodshed, Backs Truce

Kuwait called on the international community Sunday to apply pressure on Israel to "stop its aggression" on Gaza following a visit by Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal to the Gulf state.

Kuwait, which holds the rotating presidency of both the Arab League and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), also announced its backing for an Egyptian truce proposal which was turned down by Hamas.

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U.N. Chief in Cairo Monday to Discuss Egypt's Gaza Plan

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon will meet President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo Monday to discuss Egyptian proposal to end the deadly conflict in Gaza, the foreign ministry said.

More than 400 Palestinians, most of them civilians, have been killed in the Gaza Strip since July 8 as Israel presses its biggest offensive in the coastal strip in five years.

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Egypt Vows to Punish Attackers in Checkpoint Assault

Egypt vowed on Sunday to punish the attackers who killed 21 border guards in its western desert near the frontier with restive Libya.

Militants firing rocket-propelled grenades and machine-guns attacked a checkpoint, 630 kilometers (390 miles) west of Cairo, on Saturday killing 21 soldiers and wounding another four.

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Gunmen Kill 21 Egyptian Soldiers in Checkpoint Attack

Gunmen who attacked an Egyptian border guards checkpoint on Saturday killed 21 soldiers, a military official told Agence France Presse, raising a previous death toll of 15 troops.

The attackers used rocket-propelled grenades and heavy machineguns in the attack on the post in the desert area of El-Farafrah, 630 kilometers (390 miles) west of Cairo, security officials said.

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