Israel and Palestinians seem headed for ceasefire after 3-day battle

Israel and Palestinian militants within the Gaza Strip appeared headed towards a cease-fire Sunday night time after Egyptian officers mentioned either side agreed to a truce to finish a flare-up of violence that has killed dozens of Palestinians.

The cease-fire would finish the worst combating in Gaza since an 11-day conflict between Israel and Hamas final yr. Since Friday night time, the violence has killed 43 Palestinians, together with 15 kids and 4 girls.

Egyptian officers mentioned the truce was set to start at 11:30 p.m. (2030 GMT; 4:30 p.m. ET). An Egyptian intelligence official mentioned either side had agreed to the truce. He spoke on situation of anonymity due to the delicate nature of the cease-fire talks.

Israel confirmed the cease-fire was set to take maintain, however mentioned it could reply if it was violated.

Since Friday, Israeli plane have pummeled targets in Gaza, whereas the Iran-backed Palestinian Jihad militant group has fired a whole lot of rockets at Israel in response. The danger of the cross-border combating turning right into a full-fledged conflict remained so long as no truce was reached. Israel says among the lifeless had been killed by misfired rockets.

APTOPIX Palestinians Israel
Rockets are launched from Gaza in direction of Israel, over Gaza Metropolis, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2022. Israel mentioned Sunday it killed a senior Islamic Jihad commander in a crowded Gaza refugee camp, the second such focused assault since launching its high-stakes army offensive in opposition to the militant group simply earlier than the weekend. 

Adel Hana / AP

Gaza’s ruling Hamas group remained on the sidelines, presumably as a result of it fears Israeli reprisals and undoing financial understandings with Israel, together with Israeli work permits for 1000’s of Gaza residents, that bolster its management.

Israel launched its operation with a strike Friday on a pacesetter of the Islamic Jihad, and adopted up on Saturday with one other focused strike on a second distinguished chief.

The second Islamic Jihad commander, Khaled Mansour, was killed in an airstrike on an house constructing within the Rafah refugee camp in southern Gaza late Saturday, which additionally killed two different militants and 5 civilians.

Mansour, the Islamic Jihad commander for southern Gaza, was within the house of a member of the group when the missile struck, flattening the three-story constructing and badly damaging close by homes.

“Abruptly, with out warning, the home subsequent to us was bombed and every part grew to become black and dusty with smoke within the blink of a watch,” mentioned Wissam Jouda, who lives subsequent to the focused constructing.

Ahmed al-Qaissi, one other neighbor, mentioned his spouse and son had been among the many wounded, struggling shrapnel accidents. To make approach for rescue employees, al-Qaissi agreed to have a part of his home demolished.

As a funeral for Mansour started within the Gaza Strip on Sunday, the Israeli army mentioned it was hanging suspected “Islamic Jihad rocket launch posts.” Smoke could possibly be seen from the strikes as thumps from their explosions rattled Gaza. Israeli airstrikes and rocket fireplace adopted for hours as sirens wailed in central Israel. Because the sundown name to prayer sounded in Gaza, sirens wailed as far north as Tel Aviv.

Israel says among the deaths throughout this spherical had been brought on by errant rocket fireplace, together with one incident within the Jebaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza through which six Palestinians had been killed Saturday. On Sunday, a projectile hit a house in the identical space of Jebaliya, killing two males. Palestinians held Israel accountable, whereas Israel mentioned it was investigating whether or not the realm was struck by an errant rocket.

Israel’s Protection Ministry mentioned mortars fired from Gaza hit the Erez border crossing into Israel, utilized by 1000’s of Gazans every day. The mortars broken the roof and shrapnel hit the corridor’s entrance, the ministry mentioned. The crossing has been closed amid the combating.

The Rafah strike was the deadliest up to now within the present spherical of combating, which was initiated by Israel on Friday with the focused killing of Islamic Jihad’s commander for northern Gaza.

Israel mentioned it took motion in opposition to the militant group due to concrete threats of an imminent assault, however has not offered particulars. Caretaker Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who’s an skilled diplomat however untested in overseeing a conflict, unleashed the offensive lower than three months earlier than a normal election through which he’s campaigning to maintain the job.

In an announcement Sunday, Lapid mentioned the army would proceed to strike targets in Gaza “in a pinpoint and accountable approach as a way to cut back to a minimal the hurt to noncombatants.” Lapid mentioned the strike that killed Mansour was “a rare achievement.”

“The operation will proceed so long as needed,” Lapid mentioned.

Israel estimates its airstrikes killed about 15 militants.

Islamic Jihad has fewer fighters and supporters than Hamas, and little is thought about its arsenal. Each teams name for Israel’s destruction, however have totally different priorities, with Hamas constrained by the calls for of governing.

The Israeli military mentioned militants in Gaza fired about 580 rockets towards Israel. The military mentioned its air defenses had intercepted lots of them, with two of these shot down being fired towards Jerusalem. Islamic Jihad has fewer fighters and supporters than Hamas.

Air raid sirens sounded within the Jerusalem space for the primary time Sunday since final yr’s Israel-Hamas conflict.

Jerusalem is usually a flashpoint in periods of cross-border combating between Israel and Gaza. On Sunday, a whole lot of Jews, together with firebrand ultra-nationalist lawmaker Itamar Ben Gvir, visited a delicate holy website in Jerusalem, recognized to Jews because the Temple Mount and to Muslims because the Noble Sanctuary. The go to, underneath heavy police safety, ended with out incident, police mentioned.

Such demonstrative visits by Israeli hard-liners looking for to underscore Israeli claims of sovereignty over contested Jerusalem have sparked violence up to now. The holy website sits on the fault line of the Israeli-Palestinian battle and is central to rival narratives of Palestinians and Israeli Jews.

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