Egypt president to dispatch PM to Gaza

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FILE - In this Friday, July 13, 2012 file photo, Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi speaks to reporters during a joint news conference with Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki, unseen, at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt. Egypt’s Islamist president may hail from the fiercely anti-Israeli Muslim Brotherhood, but in his first major crisis over Israel, he is behaving much like his predecessor, Hosni Mubarak:. He recalled the ambassador and engaged in empty rhetoric supporting Palestinians. Mohammed Morsi is under pressure at home to do more but he is just as wary as Mubarak about straining ties with the United States. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo, File)

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's Islamist president has ordered his prime minister to lead a senior delegation to Gaza in a show of support for the coastal strip's Hamas rulers in the face of Israel's offensive.

State television said Thursday that, on orders from President Mohammed Morsi, Hesham Kandil will go to Gaza Friday. It said the delegation will also try and meet the "urgent needs" of Gaza residents. It did not elaborate.

Earlier on Thursday, Morsi vowed to work to stop Israel's campaign against Hamas, calling the Jewish state's actions there "unacceptable" in his first public comments on the crisis on his country's doorstep.

On Wednesday, Egypt recalled its ambassador to Israel to protest a barrage of Israeli airstrikes and shelling on Gaza in retaliation for rocket attacks by Gaza militants against Israel.