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Aug 1, 2014 3:19 PM

Obama calls for release of Israeli soldier in Gaza

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama is calling for the unconditional and immediate release of an Israeli soldier who was apparently captured in a clash with Hamas militants.

Obama says it will be difficult to put back together the cease-fire between Hamas and Israel that collapsed Friday. But he says the U.S. will continue working toward a cease-fire. He says Israel committed to the cease-fire, but the cease-fire was violated.

Obama says it's heartbreaking to see what's happening in Gaza. He says he wants to see everything possible done to ensure Palestinian civilians aren't killed.

Obama says Israel must be able to defend itself, but that irresponsible actions by Hamas have put civilians in danger.

The truce was brokered by the U.S. and U.N. but collapsed less than two hours after it began.

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