‘Bilateral, unconditional’ ceasefire agreed in Israel-Palestine conflict

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A statement from the Israeli security cabinet confirmed that violence in the Gaza strip will cease ‘at a later date’

A ceasefire has been agreed between Israel and Hamas following rising international pressure to de-escalate the conflict.

Israel has agreed to a ceasefire, although it is unclear when this will begin, and there have been reports of rocket and airstrikes in southern Israel and Gaza, respectively, since the announcement.

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Figures in Hamas have publicly said the ceasefire will begin at 2am local time (11pm GMT), although Israel’s official statement suggests the time of implementation is yet to be agreed.

‘Bilateral, unconditional’ ceasefire agreed in Israel-Palestine conflict (Photo by Amir Levy/Getty Images)‘Bilateral, unconditional’ ceasefire agreed in Israel-Palestine conflict (Photo by Amir Levy/Getty Images)
‘Bilateral, unconditional’ ceasefire agreed in Israel-Palestine conflict (Photo by Amir Levy/Getty Images)

A statement released by the Israeli security cabinet said: "The Security Cabinet convened tonight.

"The Political Security Cabinet unanimously accepted the recommendation of all security officials, the chief of staff, the head of the Shin Bet [internal security agency], the head of the Mossad [foreign intelligence] and the head of the National Security Council, to accept the Egyptian initiative for a bilateral unconditional ceasefire, which will take effect at a later date.

"The chief of staff, the military echelon and the head of the GSS reviewed before the ministers Israel's great achievements in the campaign, some of which were unprecedented.

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"The political echelon emphasizes that the reality on the ground will determine the continuation of the campaign."

The ceasefire will be facilitated and observed by the Egyptian government, with two delegations being sent to the area.

Hundreds dead, thousands injured

More than 250 people have been killed so far in this latest round of the conflict, with the vast majority of casualties being among those in Gaza.

More than 100 women and children have been killed in Gaza, predominantly by Israeli airstrikes, among a total of at least 232 people, according to the healthy ministry. More than a thousand people are thought to have been injured, and there have been reports of attacks on civilian buildings and medical facilities.

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In Israel, 12 people including two children have been killed by rockets which bypassed the country’s comprehensive air-defence system, the Iron Dome, and hundreds have been injured.

Tensions in the region have been a constant for decades, but the most recent spate of heightened conflict came after a police raid at a Muslim holy site in East Jerusalem earlier this month.

International pressure

The US and UK governments have been among international voices calling for a ceasefire.

Foreign Office minister James Cleverly told parliament yesterday that the UK is “fully committed to an immediate ceasefire".

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In a statement released on Tuesday following talks between US President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the White House said Biden, "expressed his support for a ceasefire and discussed US engagement with Egypt and other partners towards that end”.