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Israel, Hamas Cease-Fire Appears to Be Holding

Palestinians carry the body of Tamir Abu al-Khair, 17, who was shot and killed on Saturday by Israeli troops during a protest next to the Israeli border, eastern Gaza Strip, out of the family home during his funeral in Gaza City, Sunday, March 31, 2019.

A cease-fire between Israel and Hamas appeared to hold Sunday, with Israel easing some restrictions on a commercial crossing into Gaza and expanding the Mediterranean fishing zone.

Sunday's relative peace and quiet came after days of violence, including Palestinian rocket attacks into Israel, followed by Israeli retaliatory airstrikes.

Tens of thousands of Palestinian protesters rallied in Gaza Saturday -- far fewer than organizers hoped for. Four Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire despite efforts from others to keep the marchers away from the fence along the Israeli border.

Many of the deaths of protesters during previous marches came when soldiers opened fire at militants apparently trying to sneak into Israel across the fence.

Militants fired a rocket at southern Israel early Sunday, setting-off air-raid sirens but failing to hit its target. No one claimed responsibility and Israel did not respond with force.

Hamas officials say Egyptian mediators are trying to negotiate a firmer and more definitive cease-fire. Israel has not commented on any such talks.

Palestinian protesters have been demanding the right of return to lands they say were stolen from their families when Israel was founded as a nation in 1948.

They also want an end to Israeli settlement activity in areas they see as part of a future Palestinian state.

Israel regards Hamas as a terrorist group that refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist. Israel says it will do all it can to defend itself.