Egypt's Prime Minister Hesham Kandil visited the Gaza Strip for three hours on Friday in a show of support for the residents of the Hamas-ruled territory, reportedly at the request of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.
While in Gaza, Kandil called Israel's military operation a "disaster" and called on Israel to stop its "aggression," the BBC reported.
Kandil toured a hospital and meet with Hamas officials during his visit. He said that Egypt would "spare no effort" in trying to broker a cease-fire.
According to Army Radio, Israel agreed to halt all offensive operations in Gaza during Kandil's visit there, as long as no rockets were launched from Gaza toward Israel.
A large demonstration against Israel and in support of Hamas was scheduled to take place in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday. Thousands filled the square on Thursday to protest Israel's strike on Gaza in response to ongoing rocket attacks on Israeli cities and towns in the south over the past week. Demonstrators urged the military wing of Hamas to bomb Tel Aviv and the Egyptian army to join the attacks on Israel.
The direction of the Israeli operation in Gaza known as "Operation Pillar of Defense" and its outcome, depends in part on Egypt's position, and the Muslim Brotherhood, whose party currently runs the government, has already declared its support for Hamas in the conflict.
On Thursday, movement leaders called for the recalling of Egypt's diplomats from Israel, the severance of all diplomatic ties and the cancellation of the peace treaty. Speaking at a press conference in Khartoum, Sudan, Dr. Mohammed Badie, supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, called Israel "Satan's project."
Egyptian media reported that Morsi spoke on the phone with U.S. President Barack Obama and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday and urged them to "work swiftly to end Israel's aggression in Gaza." Morsi added "The Israelis must understand that aggression against Palestinians is not acceptable to us and may compromise stability in the region. The people of Egypt support Hamas and Gaza."
Meanwhile, Arab League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby said that representatives of the league will meet over the weekend to discuss Israel's operation in Gaza. Elaraby called on the U.N. Security Council to intervene and "end the Israeli massacre in Gaza."