Kerry

Never mind the fact that U.S. law considers Hamas a Designated Foreign Terrorist Organization.

CAIRO — Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday said that the United States was prepared to address the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip and the political demands of the Palestinians living there, but that a cease-fire first needed to be carried out.

After a two-hour meeting with President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt, Mr. Kerry said Egypt’s cease-fire proposal had provided the framework for discussions on how to arrange one.

Mr. Kerry said his meetings here had been constructive. But there was no indication of an imminent breakthrough in cementing a cease-fire deal, and Mr. Kerry indicated that he expected his deliberations to continue for the next few days.

Hamas’s demands include opening a major border crossing with Egypt and the release of prisoners held by the Israelis. Discussions of them might be unavoidable, officials say, particularly because demands to open the border crossings were addressed in a 2012 cease-fire agreement.

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