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Obama commends Netanyahu on ceasefire pledge

November 21, 2012 | 10:11 am

An Israeli border policeman fires tear gas canisters at Palestinian stone-throwers near the West Bank city of Ramallah on Nov. 21. Photo by Marko Djurica/Reuters

An Israeli border policeman fires tear gas canisters at Palestinian stone-throwers near the West Bank city of Ramallah on Nov. 21. Photo by Marko Djurica/Reuters

President Barack Obama on Wednesday spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and commended him for agreeing to the Egyptian government's ceasefire plan in the Middle East, the White House said.

Israel and Hamas agreed on Wednesday to a ceasefire brokered by Egypt to end eight days of fighting in the Gaza Strip that has killed more than 140 Palestinians and five Israelis.

"The president expressed his appreciation for the Prime Minister's efforts to work with the new Egyptian government to achieve a sustainable ceasefire and a more durable solution to this problem," a White House statement said.

Obama reiterated his commitment to Israel's security and also said he was committed to seeking funds for joint missile defense programs.

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