New Cease Fire in Gaza. Will This One Hold?
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — A new, open-ended cease-fire is in effect between Israel and Hamas.
The two sides announced today that they had agreed to the truce, after seven weeks of fighting that killed more than 2,200 people — the vast majority Palestinians.
But violence persisted until the last minutes before the cease-fire took effect. In Israel, authorities said mortar shells fired from Gaza killed one man and seriously wounded two people. In Gaza, police reported that an Israeli airstrike brought down a seven-story building. It’s the sixth high-rise to be toppled since the weekend.
Booms from Israeli strikes could be heard in Gaza after the truce announcement was made.
After the truce took effect, there was celebratory gunfire in Gaza. Chants that are normally reserved for Muslim holidays could be heard from mosque loudspeakers.
Earlier, officials from Hamas and Islamic Jihad had said the cease-fire included an Israeli agreement to ease its blockade of Gaza to allow relief supplies and construction materials into the territory. They said talks on more complex issues, such as Hamas’ demand to build an airport and a seaport for Gaza, would begin in a month.