News / Middle East

Gaza and Israel Calm as Cease-fire Holds

After eight days of conflict, Palestinians rally in celebration of what they describe as a victory over Israel, Gaza City, Nov. 22, 2012.
After eight days of conflict, Palestinians rally in celebration of what they describe as a victory over Israel, Gaza City, Nov. 22, 2012.
VOA News
A cease-fire that halted eight days of deadly fighting between Israel and Hamas held firm Thursday as thousands of flag-waving Gaza residents poured into the streets, while in Israel the mood was more subdued.

The Israeli-Palestinian Cease-fire Deal

  • Israeli and Palestinian militants agree to end all hostilities.
  • For Israel that includes attacks by land, sea, and air, and operations targeting individuals.
  • For Palestinian factions in Gaza that includes rocket and border attacks.
  • After 24 hours, crossings into Gaza are to be opened and the movement of people and goods is to be allowed.
Following a night of quiet skies after an Egyptian-brokered truce deal came into effect, Gaza's Hamas prime minister hailed the territory's multiple militant groups for respecting the cease-fire.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his government was "giving the truce a chance" but was prepared for the eventuality it could collapse. As a precaution, schools stayed closed in southern Israel, where nerves were on edge after a constant rain of rockets during the most serious Israeli-Palestinian fighting in four years.

With Israel and the Hamas militants who run the Gaza Strip having successfully maintained peace for a 24-hour period, border areas from Gaza will be opened, allowing people and goods to move in and out of the territory.

The Egyptian-brokered truce took effect at 1900 GMT Wednesday.

In the occupied West Bank, Israel's army said Thursday it arrested 55 suspected senior-level Palestinian militants it said were members of various armed factions.


Photo Gallery

  • Senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh waves to people as they celebrate what they say is a victory over Israel after an eight-day conflict, Gaza City, November 22, 2012.
  • Hamas militants carry the bodies of their comrades, who medics said were killed in Israeli air strikes on Wednesday, during their funeral in the central Gaza Strip, November 22, 2012.
  • Hassidic Jewish men from the Breslov sect dance near Kibbutz Yad Mordechai outside the northern Gaza Strip, November 22, 2012.
  • Israeli soldiers, atop a tank, prepare to leave their Gaza border position at sun rise, November 22, 2012.
  • Israeli soldiers rest at a staging area outside the northern Gaza Strip, Nov. 21, 2012.
  • After eight days of conflict Palestinian gunmen hold aloft an image of Hamas military chief Ahmed Jaabari, who was killed by an Israeli air strike, Gaza City, Nov. 21, 2012.
  • Palestinians celebrate the cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, Gaza City, Nov. 21, 2012.
  • After eight days of conflict, Palestinians celebrate Israel-Hamas cease-fire, Gaza City, Nov. 21, 2012.

Egypt is monitoring both sides for violations of the cease-fire agreement. The truce follows several days of intense aerial assaults on both sides of the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip, leaving more than 140 Palestinians and five Israelis dead.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gave a qualified welcome Thursday to the deal.

The agreement was reached amid hours of intense diplomacy involving Clinton, as well as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Clinton called the truce "a critical moment for the region.”

"The people of this region deserve a chance to live free from fear and violence and today's agreement is a step in the right direction that we should build on," said Clinton.

Clinton also praised Egypt's new government for assuming a key role in the effort and for pledging to work with Washington to ensure the cease-fire holds.

On Wednesday, a bomb blast on a bus in central Tel Aviv wounded at least 27 people, some seriously.

New rounds of missile and air attacks rained down on Gaza following the Tel Aviv attack.  Palestinians medics Wednesday said at least 10 people were killed, including a young boy.

Israel and Hamas had traded rocket fire since an Israeli missile killed Hamas's military chief in Gaza City last week.  Israel says the attack was a direct response to months of almost daily rocket fire into southern Israel from Gaza.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Lomenie from: Akron
November 22, 2012 10:19 AM
Victory!!!? Do they think it is a game or what?

by: M. Mathori Munawar from: Indonesia
November 22, 2012 8:10 AM
SUPPORT summit muslem europe asia. Gratitude can includes 3 religions. Muslem, Jews & Christians to wake up the scurity & stability in the Midle East. Especially Palestina. Thank you.

by: ali baba from: new york
November 22, 2012 6:36 AM
let us straight the fact. the conflict betwwen hamas and isreal was for eight days. During thay days,houses ,building were destroyed. lives were lost. Hamas accept ceasefire because they are the losers. morsey is not the peacemaker. they know that isreal achieve its objective for punishing hamas. the arab understand the langauge of power.for example,attack of american embassy in libya would not occured whem goerge w Bush is a president.or Nicxon is ni power

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More