Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton traveled to Jerusalem, Ramallah, and Cairo on November 20-21, 2012. She met with regional leaders, including with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President of the Palestinian National Authority Mahmoud Abbas, and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, to consult on the situation in Gaza.
Today, while in Cairo, Secretary Clinton and Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr announced an agreement for a ceasefire in Gaza. Secretary Clinton said:
"...I want to thank President Morsi for his personal leadership to de-escalate the situation in Gaza and end the violence. This is a critical moment for the region. Egypt's new government is assuming the responsibility and leadership that has long made this country a cornerstone of regional stability and peace. The United States welcomes the agreement today for a ceasefire in Gaza. For it to hold, the rocket attacks must end, a broader calm return.
"The people of this region deserve the chance to live free from fear and violence, and today's agreement is a step in the right direction that we should build on. Now we have to focus on reaching a durable outcome that promotes regional stability and advances the security, dignity, and legitimate aspirations of Palestinians and Israelis alike. President Morsi and I discussed how the United States and Egypt can work together to support the next steps in that process. In the days ahead, the United States will work with partners across the region to consolidate this progress, improve conditions for the people of Gaza, and provide security for the people of Israel. Ultimately, every step must move us toward a comprehensive peace for all the people of the region.
"As I discussed today with President Morsi, as well as Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas, there is no substitute for a just and lasting peace. Now that there is a ceasefire, I am looking forward to working with the Foreign Minister and others to move this process."
You can read more about the Secretary's trip to the Middle East here.