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By Nidal al-Mughrabi and Dan Williams GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry pressed regional proxies to nail down a Gaza ceasefire on Friday as the civilian death toll soared, threatening to spread Israeli-Palestinian bloodshed to the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem. With Israel and Islamist Hamas setting seemingly irreconcilable terms for a truce that mediators hope will begin by a major Muslim festival next week, Kerry worked the phones from Egypt while aides made clear his patience was limited. The urgency was spurred on Thursday by the killing of 15 people sheltering at a U.N.-run school in the northern Gaza Strip, which local officials blamed on Israeli shelling. Israel said its forces had come under attack from Palestinian militants in the area of the school and that they had shot back.
JERUSALEM (AP) — An Israeli defense official says the Security Cabinet is meeting to discuss international cease-fire efforts, but also the option of expanding its eight-day-old ground operation in Gaza.