Cease-fire between Palestinians, Israel takes effect in Gaza (2023)

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — A cease-fire 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 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 cease-fire took effect at 11:30 p.m. (2030 GMT; 4:30 p.m. EDT). 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 cease-fire was violated.

Israeli aircraft had pummeled targets in Gaza since Friday, while the Iran-backed Palestinian Jihad militant group fired hundreds of rockets at Israel in response.

Forty-three Palestinians were killed over three days, including 15 children and four women, and 311 were injured, the Palestinian Health Ministry said. Israel said 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.

(Video) Cease-fire between Palestinians, Israel takes effect in Gaza

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.

“Suddenly, without warning, the house next to us was bombed and everything became black and dusty with smoke in the blink of an eye,” said Wissam Jouda, who lives next to the targeted building.

Ahmed al-Qaissi, another neighbor, said his wife and son were among the wounded, suffering shrapnel injuries. To make way for rescue workers, al-Qaissi agreed to have part of his house demolished.

During the funeral for Mansour, Israeli air strikes hit what the military said were suspected rocket launch posts. Smoke could be seen from the strikes as thumps from their explosions rattled Gaza. Israeli airstrikes and rocket fire followed for hours as sirens wailed in central Israel. As the sunset call to prayer sounded in Gaza, sirens wailed as far north as Tel Aviv.

(Video) Cease-fire between Palestinians, Israel takes effect | USA TODAY

Israel said some of the deaths during this round were caused by errant rocket fire, including one incident in the Jebaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza in which six Palestinians were killed Saturday. On Sunday, a projectile hit a home in the same area of Jebaliya, killing two men. Palestinians held Israel responsible, while Israel said it was investigating whether the area was struck by an errant rocket.

Israel's Defense Ministry said mortars fired from Gaza hit the Erez border crossing into Israel, used by thousands of Gazans daily. The mortars damaged the roof and shrapnel hit the hall's entrance, the ministry said. The crossing has been closed amid the fighting.

The Rafah strike was the deadliest so far in the current round of fighting, which was initiated by Israel on Friday with the targeted killing of Islamic Jihad's commander for northern Gaza.

Israel said it took action against the militant group because of concrete threats of an imminent attack, but has not provided details. Caretaker Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who is an experienced diplomat but untested in overseeing a war, unleashed the offensive less than three months before a general election in which he is campaigning to keep the job.

In a statement Sunday, Lapid said the military would continue to strike targets in Gaza “in a pinpoint and responsible way in order to reduce to a minimum the harm to noncombatants.” Lapid said the strike that killed Mansour was “an extraordinary achievement.”

“The operation will continue as long as necessary,” Lapid said.

(Video) Israel-Gaza conflict: Palestinian death toll rises to 41 amid ceasefire talks

U.S. President Joe Biden said he welcomed the cease-fire between Israel and Gaza-based militants.

“Over these last 72-hours, the United States has worked with officials from Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Egypt, Qatar, Jordan, and others throughout the region to encourage a swift resolution to the conflict,” he said in a statement.

The U.N. Security Council scheduled an emergency meeting for Monday on the violence. China, which holds the council presidency this month, scheduled the session in response to a request from the United Arab Emirates, which represents Arab nations on the council, as well as China, France, Ireland and Norway.

“We underscore our commitment to do all we can towards ending the ongoing escalation, ensuring the safety and security of the civilian population, and following-up on the Palestinian prisoners file,” said U.N. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, in a statement.

The Israeli army said militants in Gaza fired about 580 rockets toward Israel. The army said its air defenses had intercepted many of them, with two of those shot down being fired toward Jerusalem. Islamic Jihad has fewer fighters and supporters than Hamas.

Israel estimates its airstrikes killed about 15 militants.

(Video) Celebrations across Gaza as ceasefire takes effect

Islamic Jihad has fewer fighters and supporters than Hamas, and little is known about its arsenal. Both groups call for Israel's destruction, but have different priorities, with Hamas constrained by the demands of governing.

Hamas had a strong incentive to avoid another war. Last year’s Israel-Hamas war, one of four major conflicts and several smaller battles over the last 15 years, exacted a staggering toll on the impoverished territory’s 2.3 million Palestinian residents.

Over the past year, Israel and Hamas have reached tacit understandings based on trading calm for work permits and a slight easing of the border blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt when Hamas overran the territory 15 years ago. Israel has issued 12,000 work permits to Gaza laborers, and has held out the prospect of granting another 2,000 permits.

In a sign of the broad immediate impact on the Gaza population, the territory's lone power plant ground to a halt at noon Saturday due to lack of fuel. Israel has kept its crossing points into Gaza closed since Tuesday. With the new disruption, Gazans could use only four hours of electricity a day, increasing their reliance on private generators and deepening the territory’s chronic power crisis amid peak summer heat.

Jerusalem is typically a flashpoint during periods of cross-border fighting between Israel and Gaza. On Sunday, hundreds of Jews, including firebrand ultra-nationalist lawmaker Itamar Ben Gvir, visited a sensitive holy site in Jerusalem, known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. The visit, under heavy police protection, ended without incident, police said.

Such demonstrative visits by Israeli hard-liners seeking to underscore Israeli claims of sovereignty over contested Jerusalem have sparked violence in the past. The holy site sits on the fault line of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and is central to rival narratives of Palestinians and Israeli Jews.

(Video) Israel-Gaza: Inside Gaza as ceasefire comes into effect after 11 days of violence

In Palestinian cities and towns in the West Bank, Israeli security forces said they detained 19 people on suspicion of belonging to the Islamic Jihad during overnight raids.

Goldenberg reported from Tel Aviv, Israel. Associated Press writer Edith M. Lederer in New York contributed.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


Is there a ceasefire between Israel and Palestine? ›

Israel on Monday reopened border crossings into the Gaza strip, according to Reuters, after the country signed a truce with Palestinian militants following three days of violence that left dozens of Palestinians dead and hundreds injured, marking a potential end to the worst fighting since war broke out between Israel ...

Is there a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza? ›

The United States welcomes the agreement today to bring an end to hostilities and restore calm in Gaza and Israel. The agreement will bring a welcome respite to Israeli and Palestinian civilians and permit deliveries of critical fuel and other supplies into Gaza.

What is the argument between Israel and Gaza? ›

Gaza is ruled by the Palestinian militant group Hamas, which has fought Israel many times. Israel and Egypt tightly control Gaza's borders to stop weapons getting to Hamas. Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank say they are suffering because of Israeli actions and restrictions.

What is the main cause of conflict between Israel and Palestine today? ›

The Israeli–Palestinian conflict has its roots in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with the birth of major nationalist movements among the Jews and among the Arabs, both geared towards attaining sovereignty for their people in the Middle East.

What's the meaning of cease fire? ›

an agreement, usually between two armies, to stop fighting in order to allow discussions about peace: declare a ceasefire. Stopping fighting.

When did Israel and Palestine agree to a ceasefire? ›

In separate statements, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Prime Minister of Israel announced a ceasefire would come into effect at 11:30 p.m. local time on 7 August, he continued.

When was the ceasefire in Israel? ›

Hamas and Israel reached a ceasefire agreement on June 19, 2008. Though the exact terms are disputed, the basic agreement was that Palestinians in Gaza would cease rocket and mortar fire into Israel.

Is Gaza a country? ›

Gaza Strip, Arabic Qiṭāʿ Ghazzah, Hebrew Reẓuʿat ʿAzza, territory occupying 140 square miles (363 square km) along the Mediterranean Sea just northeast of the Sinai Peninsula. The Gaza Strip is unusual in being a densely settled area not recognized as a de jure part of any extant country.

What is happening in Palestine right now 2022? ›

In 2022, Israeli forces have killed at least 62 Palestinians in the West Bank, according to the Ministry of Health. According to Israel Army Radio, the incident occurred when rioters threw stones and Molotov cocktails at the Israeli soldiers.

Who started the Israel and Palestine war? ›

The Arab-Israeli War of 1948 broke out when five Arab nations invaded territory in the former Palestinian mandate immediately following the announcement of the independence of the state of Israel on May 14, 1948.

What did Israel do to Palestine? ›

On May 14, 1948, the State of Israel was created, sparking the first Arab-Israeli War. The war ended in 1949 with Israel's victory, but 750,000 Palestinians were displaced and the territory was divided into 3 parts: the State of Israel, the West Bank (of the Jordan River), and the Gaza Strip.

What is the difference between Israel and Palestine? ›

“Israel” is the name of a state which was established in Palestine in 1948 for the Jewish people. Both names are ancient in origin. Another term, the “Palestinian territories,” refers to areas of Palestine known as the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Do Palestinians have rights in Israel? ›

Elections, political parties, and representation

Most Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied territories live under Israeli occupation and are not Israeli citizens. They are not allowed to vote in Israel.

Is Gaza in Israel or Palestine? ›

zah], Hebrew: רצועת עזה, [r'tsu'at 'áza]), or simply Gaza, is a Palestinian enclave on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. It borders Egypt on the southwest for 11 kilometers (6.8 mi) and Israel on the east and north along a 51 km (32 mi) border.

Are Palestinians allowed in Israel? ›

Israel enforces restrictions on the freedom of movement of Palestinians in the West Bank by employing a system of permanent, temporary and random manned checkpoints, the West Bank Barrier and by forbidding the usage of roads by Palestinians.

What is the correct meaning of the word cease? ›

intransitive verb. 1a : to come to an end the fighting gradually ceased. b : to bring an activity or action to an end : discontinue they have been ordered to cease and desist. 2 obsolete : to become extinct : die out. cease.

How do you use ceasefire in a sentence? ›

They have agreed to a ceasefire after three years of conflict.

What does ceasefire do in Call of war? ›

Ceasefire. Ceasefire is a transition stage between war and peace. Units in combat disengage and no longer give or receive battle damage, but there is still a state of war for morale purposes. It replaces the embargo option when at war with that country, but also functions the same way.

Is it safe to travel to Israel? ›

Exercise Increased Caution When Traveling To:

Israel due to terrorism and civil unrest. West Bank due to terrorism and civil unrest.

Is Israel and Palestine the same place? ›

Much of this land is now considered present-day Israel. Today, Palestine theoretically includes the West Bank (a territory that sits between modern-day Israel and Jordan) and the Gaza Strip (which borders modern-day Israel and Egypt). However, control over this region is a complex and evolving situation.

Who lives in the Gaza Strip? ›

The population of the West Bank and Gaza is almost completely Palestinian Arab. The bulk of these are Sunni Muslims: 92 percent of West Bankers and 99 percent of Gazans, with the rest Christians.

Who did Israel have a war with? ›

ConflictCombatant 1Combatant 2
War of Independence (1947–1949)IsraelEgypt Iraq Transjordan Syria Lebanon Saudi Arabia Yemen Holy War Army ALA
Sinai War (1956)Israel United Kingdom FranceEgypt
Six-Day War (1967)IsraelEgypt Syria Jordan Iraq
13 more rows


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