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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visits Cairo

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sissi received US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Cairo, his sixth trip to the Middle East since the start of the war between Israel   -  
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Gaza City

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sissi received US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Cairo, his sixth trip to the Middle East since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas.

President Al-Sissi stressed the urgent need for a ceasefire, deploring the humanitarian crisis and famine threatening the lives of civilians in Gaza, particularly in the town of Rafah where almost 1.5 million Palestinians are seeking refuge.

The previous day, Antony Blinken had visited Saudi Arabia to discuss a ceasefire in Gaza, the release of prisoners and hostages, and the strengthening of international humanitarian efforts, according to Matthew Miller, spokesman for the US State Department.

Mr Blinken was due to meet Arab foreign ministers later on Thursday to discuss broader security guarantees for Israel and the role of Arab states in managing and rebuilding the Gaza Strip after the war.

Mr Blinken will travel to Israel on Friday for talks aimed at negotiating a ceasefire agreement, as well as voicing US concerns about Israel's plans to extend its ground offensive to the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah.