U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken wrapped up his Mideast tour on Wednesday with visits to Cairo and Amman to solidify the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

“We’ve had in Egypt a real and effective partner in dealing with the violence, bringing it to a close relatively quickly,” Blinken said after meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who worked to broker the truce, reported Reuters.

Blinken added that the United States and Egypt are “working closely together.” He said America would aid residents of Gaza with $5.5 million in disaster relief and $33 million for the UNWRA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees.

“In the coming days, I’ll be consulting broadly with Gulf countries and other partners to ensure we all contribute to recovery, stability and the reduction of tensions,” he said.

In Amman, the AP quoted Blinken as saying the ceasefire was not the goal, but only the starting point for “something to build on.”

Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar in Gaza assured that humanitarian funds would not go to the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, its military wing.

“We have satisfactory sources of money for Hamas and Qassam. A major part of it from Iran and part in donations from Arabs, Muslims and liberals of the world who are sympathetic to our people and their rights,” he said, according to the report.


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