Israel and Hamas agree to a ceasefire

Israel and Palestinian militant group Hamas agree to a ceasefire
Palestinians inspect damage to buildings in northern Gaza City on May 20. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: After more than a week of conflict left hundreds dead, Israel and the Hamas have agreed to a ceasefire. Most of the people have died in the conflict are Palestinians. The ceasefire means an end to the immediate bloodshed, but will likely leave both sides further apart than ever.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) carried out a devastating aerial bombardment of Gaza over 11 days, while the Palestinian militant group Hamas fired thousands of rockets into Israel, in violence that has underscored how elusive a longer term peace agreement between the two sides has become.

According to the Hamas-run health ministry there, Israeli airstrikes killed 232 Palestinians, including 65 children, and according to the IDF and Israel’s emergency service, at least 12 people in Israel, including two children, have been killed by Hamas fire from Gaza.

A senior leader of Hamas said that the truce, under terms brokered by Egypt, would commence at 2am local time on Friday.

A statement from the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reads: “The Security Cabinet convened this evening. And accepted unanimously the recommendation of all security elements — the Chief of Staff, the head of the Shin Bet, the Head of the Mossad, and the head of the National Security Council — to accept the Egyptian initiative for a mutual unconditional ceasefire that will go into effect at an hour to be agreed upon later.”

Following the announcement, celebrations of the truce could be seen in Gaza and Tel Aviv.

In Tel Aviv, the news of ceasefire drew a mix of reactions, from relief to skepticism.

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