MOSCOW, September 1 (RIA Novosti) - Moscow hopes that Israel and Palestine will abide by the long-term ceasefire agreement reached on August 26, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday.
“We welcome the long-term ceasefire agreement, reached with the help of Egypt’s mediation. I hope it is going to be long-term not only on paper, but in real life. The situation in the Gaza Strip will be alleviated as the checkpoints are opened,” Lavrov said in his address to students of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), a university belonging to the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry.
“We cannot settle down yet and think that there is no more shelling, the blockage weakened a little, so let’s rest for some time. Under no condition. We have to achieve a recommencement of talks on the establishment of a state of Palestine,” Lavrov said.
Lavrov has also highlighted that Moscow supports Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ calls to concentrate on territorial issues in the beginning of the consultations and to discuss all other relevant problems later on.
Israel and Palestine agreed on an open-ended ceasefire from August 26.
Under the deal brokered by the Egyptian government, Israel is to open its border crossings to allow humanitarian aid and construction materials to enter Gaza, and is to extend the permitted fishing zone to 6 miles off the Gaza coast.
On July 8, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge against the Hamas movement in response to the group’s rocket attacks. On July 17, Israel switched to a ground offensive to destroy the network of tunnels along Gaza’s Israeli border.
More than 2,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have lost their lives to the conflict in Gaza since July 8. During this time Israel has lost 68 people.