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Jihad says it did not join Hamas in talks with Egypt
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09:20, February 25, 2008

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Islamic Jihad movement on Sunday denied reports that it had joined Hamas in talks with Egyptian officials about ceasefire with Israel and lifting the siege on Gaza Strip.

"We are not part of the talks that are being held now... the issue is limited to Hamas and our Egyptian brothers," said Khaledal-Batsh, a leader of the radical group.

A Hamas delegation held talks with the Egyptians in Sinai on Saturday and returned to Gaza without announcing any success. The talks were focusing on reopening Rafah crossing point between Gaza and Egypt and bringing goods into Gaza. Al-Batsh says these issues were "the government and the Palestinian Authority's(PA) duties and the Islamic Jihad is not part of the government or the PA."

Hamas took over the Gaza Strip last June after routing security forces loyal to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Since then, Israel imposes a very strict blockade on the impoverished Gaza. Meanwhile, al-Batsh said his organization will not stop firing rockets into Israel as long as the Israel continues its military attacks in Gaza Strip and West Bank.

Source: Xinhua

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