Sarkozy urges to open Gaza borders
Israel should open borders on the Gaza Strip to enable transportation of humanitarian aid to the population of the enclave, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said at a conference in Sharm el Sheikh dedicated to restoring Gaza on March 2, Al Jazeera reported.
"The French government is ready to render assistance to the Palestinian people. They have suffered too much. All borders on Gaza should be opened," Sarkozy said.
The conference in the Egyptian town of Sharm el Sheikh will be attended by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and EU foreign ministers.
According to Palestinian Autonomy Prime Minister Salam al Fayyad, roughly $3 billion will be allocated for restoring Gaza, which suffered from the recent Israeli attack. A 22-day military operation in Gaza killed 1,300 Palestinians and destroyed houses, schools and administrative facilities.
Hamas representatives were not invited to the conference.
Hamas should begin a political dialogue with the Abbas administration and Israel, Sarkozy said.
"We spend too much time and money to solve minor conflicts, when we should help the Palestinian civilian population," he said.
Over the past 5 years, France allocated $7 billion to help the Palestinians, Sarkozy added.
"When speaking of the Palestinian people, we should not differentiate between the populations of the Gaza Strip and West Bank. Assistance should be provided to both," Sarkozy said.
Clinton is expected to announce the allocation of $300 million by the U.S. to rebuild Gaza and $600 million to assist the Palestinian Autonomy.
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