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Rice says US can help Egypt with Gaza border
uusjio | January 10, 2008 at 12:30 amby
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The United States is ready to give technical aid to help Egypt stop arms smuggling into Hamas-run Gaza, but Cairo must improve border patrol efforts, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Tuesday.
Israeli officials have complained that Egypt is doing a "terrible" job on the Gaza border, failing to stop smuggling of weapons and ammunition into Gaza through tunnels under the so-called Philadelphi Corridor that separates Egypt and Gaza.
"We think that Egypt has to do more. Those tunnels need to be dealt with," Rice said in an interview with Middle East journalists in Washington before traveling to the region with President George W. Bush.
A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers team had studied the problem and talked to Egyptian security personnel about it, Rice said.
"The Egyptians have said that they want some, perhaps, technical help. We`re prepared obviously, to give that, but it`s also -- you know, the will to do it is very important here," Rice said.