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Obama, Netanyahu Discuss Tense Situation in Gaza

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday to reaffirm the United States' condemnation of Hamas rocket fire into Israeli cities.

Obama expressed condolences to the people of Israel for the deaths of three teenagers last month and expressed concern over the risk of further escalation. He told Netanyahu that both sides need to do everything they can to protect the lives of civilians and restore peace and calm, according to a readout of the call.

The U.S. is prepared to facilitate an end to hostilities, Obama said, including a return to November 2012's casefire agreement.

The leaders also discussed the situation in East Jerusalem and the West Bank during Thursday's call. They also spoke about the P5+1 negotiations with Iran. On the latter topic, Obama ensured Netanyahu that the U.S. would not accept any agreement that doesn't ensure Iran's nuclear program exists solely for peaceful purposes.

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