Home Tags Posts tagged with "israel ceasefire"

israel ceasefire

Image source: The Time of Israel

An Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire in the Gaza Strip has come into effect early on Friday, May 21.

The ceasefire brings to an end 11 days of fighting in which more than 250 people were killed, most of them in Gaza.

Palestinians poured on to the streets of Gaza soon after the truce began, while a Hamas official warned the group had not let down its guard.

Both Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas have claimed victory in the conflict.

President Joe Biden said the ceasefire had brought a “genuine opportunity” for progress.

Soon after the ceasefire started at 02:00 on May 21, large numbers of Palestinians took to the streets in cars and on foot to celebrate. In Gaza, drivers honked their horns, while loudspeakers from mosques pronounced “the victory of the resistance”.

Israel’s military said it was removing nearly all emergency restrictions on movement throughout the country.

Fighting broke out on May 10 after weeks of rising Israeli-Palestinian tension in occupied East Jerusalem that culminated in clashes at a holy site revered by both Muslims and Jews. Hamas began firing rockets after warning Israel to withdraw from the site, triggering retaliatory air strikes.

At least 243 people, including more than 100 women and children, were killed in Gaza, according to the Hamas-controlled health ministry. Israel has said it killed at least 225 militants during the fighting. Hamas has not given casualty figures for fighters.

In Israel, 12 people, including two children, were killed, its medical service says.

The Israeli military says more than 4,300 rockets were fired towards its territory by militants and that it struck more than 1,000 militant targets in Gaza.

Gaza Conflict: Israel’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu Vows to Continue Strikes

Israel-Gaza Violence: Palestinians Fire Hundreds of Missiles at Tel Aviv after Gaza Air Strikes

The Israeli Political Security Cabinet said on May 20 it had “unanimously accepted the recommendation” for a ceasefire.

PM Benjamin Netanyahu faced criticism from some in Israel who said he had halted the conflict too soon. The mayors of Sderot and Ashkelon – two of the Israeli towns hardest hit by rockets from Gaza – were among those to voice their disappointment, saying Hamas should have been eliminated.

At a news conference on May 21, PM Netanyahu said Israel had “exacted a heavy price from Hamas”.

A Hamas official told the Associated Press the ceasefire announced by Israel amounted to a “victory” for the Palestinian people.

This view was shared by people celebrating on the streets of Gaza.

(AP Photo/Adel Hana)

Israel’s military is investigating “harm caused to civilians” from an air strike it launched in Gaza.

According to Palestinian medics, eight members of one family died in the strike, among them five children.

However, Israel said the attack targeted the home of Rasmi Abu Malhous, who it called a militant commander from the group Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

Israel said no civilians were expected to be in harm’s way.

The Deir al-Balah attack, in central Gaza, was the deadliest episode in a two-day exchange of fire between Israel and the Palestinian group.

The attack took place on November 14, shortly before a fragile ceasefire came into effect.

On November 16, Israeli air raids struck Hamas targets for the first time in the latest violence.

Israel’s military originally insisted that the head of the family, who it said was killed, was a commander of a PIJ rocket-launching unit.

It now says the information about his identity is not certain and is being reviewed.

Islamic Jihad did not comment on whether Rasmi Abu Malhous was a member.

Gaza Violence: Ceasefire Agreed as Four Israelis and 23 Palestinians Were Killed

Israel Targets Hamas Sites in Gaza in Retaliation for Rocket Strikes

On November 16, Israel says its air defenses intercepted two rockets fired from Gaza at the southern Israeli city of Beersheva.

In response, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said they struck “Hamas terror targets” in Gaza. Hamas’ al-Aqsa TV reported a naval facility and a site in Beit Lahia being hit.

Up till now, Israel has avoided targeting Hamas, which controls the Palestinian territory.

Fighting flared after Israel killed a PIJ commander in the early hours of November 12.

Israel said the commander, Baha Abu al-Ata, was a “ticking bomb” who was behind a planned imminent attack and responsible for recent rocket-fire from Gaza.

More than 450 rockets and mortars were fired at Israel, and several waves of air strikes carried out on Gaza in two days of violence.