(12:15 p.m. ET, 7:15 p.m. local) Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal on the Tel Aviv bus attack
CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour, in an interview in Cairo, asked Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal whether Hamas was responsible for Wednesday's bombing of a bus in Tel Aviv, Israel.
"Not Hamas, not others, not other people from, not Hamas. No one can announce except those who committed (it), not me," Meshaal said. "The lesson is what matters. What led to this? Who created the circumstances that led to this (operation)? It is (Israeli Prime Minister) Benjamin Netanyahu with his crimes, in killing the kids of Gaza, and the continuity of aggression. He (creates) such ramifications everywhere. This could lead to any kind of reaction as retaliation for what happened in Gaza."
(9:25 a.m. ET, 4:25 p.m. local) Israeli President Shimon Peres on chances for a cease-fire
CNN's Wolf Blitzer asked Peres if there would be a cease-fire. "I hope so," Peres replied. "It is not yet done. There are difficulties, in any negotiation there are difficulties, but this time their expectations are over the horizon. But we are waiting and trying. The situation is very strange; both sides won't like a ground operation, neither us or them. A cease-fire is preferred by both sides, but the conditions they start to put (out) are little bit exaggerated."
When asked what Hamas wanted of Israel, he added: "They want Israel to do nothing. We shall not fly over, we shall not guard the border. Many others. The conditions of Israel (are) basically security conditions. Their conditions are political ones, and this is a contradiction."
(8:43 a.m. ET, 3:43 p.m. local) State Department on Hillary Clinton talks with Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland issued the following statement:
"President Abbas and Secretary Clinton met for half an hour in Ramallah today. President Abbas was joined by Palestinian chief negotiator, Saeb Erakat, and spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh. The secretary was joined by Consul General Michael Ratney, special envoy David Hale and Vice Admiral Harry Harris. The conversation focused on the situation in Gaza and the effort to de-escalate.
"The secretary expressed appreciation for President Abbas' leadership in encouraging the restoration of calm and his role in maintaining security throughout the area, including in the West Bank. She also underscored her heartfelt concern for innocent lives lost both Palestinians and Israelis and for all those who have been wounded or are living in fear and danger.
"The secretary indicated that we were working to support ongoing efforts to defuse the crisis, especially Egyptian-Israeli conversations, and noted that she would be visiting Cairo later in the day.
"She reviewed her recent conversations with Prime Minister (Benjamin) Netanyahu, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and a number of her ministerial counterparts as well as the president's phone calls to the Egyptian and Israeli leadership.
"President Abbas expressed appreciation for U.S. efforts.
"The secretary also reiterated the U.S. position opposing the Palestinian initiative to seek observer state status at the U.N. General Assembly, and our view that the best way to achieve statehood is through direct, bilateral negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians."
(7:39 a.m. ET, 2:39 p.m. local) U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrives in Cairo, Egypt
Clinton touched down in Cairo shortly after 7 a.m. ET and issued the following statement after a bus bombing in Tel Aviv, Israel.
"The United States strongly condemns this terrorist attack and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and the people of Israel. As I arrive in Cairo, I am closely monitoring reports from Tel Aviv, and we will stay in close contact with Prime Minister Netanyahu's team. The United States stands ready to provide any assistance that Israel requires. "