CAIRO - The chief Palestinian delegate to truce talks with Israel warned on Tuesday that Gaza violence could erupt anew unless progress is made toward a lasting deal ahead of a midnight deadline. After a last-minute agreement was struck to extend by 24 hours a deadline to reach a truce, Azzam al-Ahmad, senior leader of President Mahmoud Abbas' mainstream Fatah movement, said there had been "no progress on any point" in talks aimed at resolving the Gaza conflict. "We hope that every minute of the coming 24 hours will be used to reach an agreement, and if not (successful), the circle of violence will continue," Ahmad said.
He accused Israel of "maneuvering and stalling" as gaps on key issues continued to dog efforts to achieve a long-term deal between Israel and militant groups in the Gaza Strip, dominated by Hamas Islamists, after five weeks of fighting. Senior Hamas official Moussa Abu Marzouk accused Israel of stalling and insisted in a Twitter post that his group "will never cede any" demands.
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