Egypt agrees to allow aid through Kerem Shalom crossing after meeting with US

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Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi agreed in a call Friday with his US counterpart Joe Biden to allow UN aid through the crucial Kerem Shalom crossing to conflict-torn Gaza, the White House said.

“President Biden welcomed the commitment from President al-Sisi to permit the flow of UN-provided humanitarian assistance” through the crossing, it said in a readout of the call.

“This will help save lives.”

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The crossing has been virtually shut down as Israel pursues its offensive against Hamas, with UN agencies warning of a growing risk of famine in the Palestinian territory.

Biden also gave his “full commitment” to back efforts to reopen the crossing to the southern Gazan city of Rafah, where Israel has launched a fresh operation, it said.

The two leaders also discussed ceasefire talks involving US, Egyptian and Qatari mediators, which have once again stalled.

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The US president had agreed to send a “senior team” to Cairo for further discissions, the White House said.

CIA chief Bill Burns was expected to meet Israeli representatives in Paris on Friday or Saturday in a bid to relaunch negotiations, a Western source close to the issue said.

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