Ceasefire Between Israel, Palestinians After Days of Violence in Gaza

After 3 days of the worst fighting since last year
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 8, 2022 12:00 AM CDT
Ceasefire Between Israel, Palestinians After Days of Violence in Gaza
Mourners pray next to the bodies of Khaled Mansour a senior commander in the Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad and other Palestinians who were killed in Israeli airstrikes, during their funeral in Rafah, southern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2022.   (AP Photo/Yousef Masoud)

(Newser) – A ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian militants took effect late Sunday in a bid to end nearly three days of violence that killed dozens of Palestinians and disrupted the lives of hundreds of thousands of Israelis, the AP reports. The flare-up was the worst fighting between Israel and Gaza militant groups since Israel and Hamas fought an 11-day war last year, and adds to the destruction and misery that have plagued blockaded Gaza for years. The Egyptian-brokered ceasefire took effect at 11:30pm local time. Israeli strikes and militant rockets continued in the minutes leading up to the beginning of the truce, and Israel said it would “respond strongly” if the ceasefire was violated.

Israeli aircraft have pummeled targets in Gaza since Friday, while the Iran-backed Palestinian Jihad militant group has fired hundreds of rockets at Israel in response. The risk of the cross-border fighting turning into a full-fledged war remained as long as no truce was reached. Israel says some of the dead were killed by misfired rockets. Gaza’s ruling Hamas group remained on the sidelines, possibly because it fears Israeli reprisals and undoing economic understandings with Israel, including Israeli work permits for thousands of Gaza residents, that bolster its control.

Israel launched its operation with a strike Friday on a leader of the Islamic Jihad, and followed up on Saturday with another targeted strike on a second prominent leader. The second Islamic Jihad commander, Khaled Mansour, was killed in an airstrike on an apartment building in the Rafah refugee camp in southern Gaza late Saturday, which also killed two other militants and five civilians. Mansour, the Islamic Jihad commander for southern Gaza, was in the apartment of a member of the group when the missile struck, flattening the three-story building and badly damaging nearby houses. (Read more Israel stories.)

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