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Ceasefire deal ends Israeli bombing in Gaza that left 44 dead

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Ceasefire deal ends Israeli bombing in Gaza that left 44 dead
At least 15 children were killed in the three-day long bombardment and more than 360 Palestinians wounded
Key Points
Israeli shelling damages at least 1,600 Palestinian residential units
Palestinian rockets wound three Israelis lightly
Islamic Jihad chief says truce conditioned on prisoners' release

Live Updates

LIVE BLOG CLOSED
1 week ago

Middle East Eye is wrapping up the live blog on Gaza but we will continue to monitor the situation on our website.

An Egypt-brokered ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian factions came into effect at 11:30pm local time (8:30pm GMT) on Sunday.

Israel’s assault on Gaza, which began on Friday, has left 44 Palestinians dead, including 15 children, and injured hundreds more.

In Israel, three people were lightly wounded by the shrapnel of Palestinian rockets.

Twelve hours in, the ceasefire appeared to holding, as residents of the besieged Palestinian enclave began to clear rubble and continued to mourn the dead.

Please continue to follow us for more updates, and check out our Twitter and Instagram for the latest coverage.

Russia says Israeli air strikes caused escalation of tensions in Gaza
1 week ago

Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova has said Israeli air strikes caused the escalation of tensions in the besieged Gaza Strip.

“The new escalation was caused by the Israeli army firing into the Gaza Strip on 5 August," Zakharova said in a statement, prompting the Palestinians to respond with rocket attacks into Israel.

"We express deep concern about these developments, which could lead to the resumption of an all-out military confrontation and the further deterioration of the deplorable humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip," she said, reaffirming Russia's support for a comprehensive and long-term settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict under the principle of the two-state solution.

"We note once again that the recurrent violence can be put to an end only through negotiations, which must lead to the realisation of the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people to establish an independent state on the 1967 borders," said Zakharova.

Biden welcomes ceasefire, calls for probe of civilian casualties
1 week ago

The US President Joe Biden has said he welcomes a truce in Gaza declared by Israel and Palestinian Islamic Jihad and said he supports an investigation into the deaths of civilians over the weekend.

The Israeli bombardment killed at least 44 Palestinians, including 15 children. More than 360 were wounded, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

In Israel, three people were lightly wounded by the shrapnel of Palestinian rockets.

"My administration supports a timely and thorough investigation into all of these reports, and we also call on all parties to fully implement the ceasefire, and to ensure fuel and humanitarian supplies are flowing into Gaza as the fighting subsides," Biden said in a statement late on Sunday.

Fuel trucks enter Gaza through Karm Abu Salem crossing
1 week ago

An AFP journalist has reported that fuel trucks have entered the besieged Gaza Strip on Monday through the Karm Abu Salem commercial crossing following Sunday's ceasefire.

Earlier on Monday, Israel's military had announced it would allow humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip after closing crossings into the enclave six days ago.

Israel also said it was removing road blocks and resuming train services between Ashkelon and Sderot by noon local time.

Evening update
1 week ago

Hello MEE readers.

The third day of Israel’s assault on Gaza - which has so far killed 44 Palestinians, including 15 children, and injured hundreds more - has ended with an Egypt-brokered ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian factions.

The ceasefire came into effect at 11:30pm local time (8:30pm GMT) on Sunday. Both Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement, the main target of Israel in this round of fighting, have confirmed the ceasefire and claimed victory. 

According to the PIJ chief Ziyad Nakhla, the group came out on top after Israel failed to destroy its capabilities as it promised it would do. He also said the ceasefire was conditioned on the release of two PIJ officials arrested in the occupied West Bank by Israel.

A Palestinian man sits amid the rubble of a building following Israeli air strikes in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, on 7 August 2022 (AFP)
A Palestinian man sits amid the rubble of a building following Israeli air strikes in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, on 7 August 2022 (AFP)

Hours before the ceasefire came into force, a string of suspected Israeli air strikes across the Gaza Strip had killed nine Palestinian children and wounded many others.

In one blast, five boys aged between five years old and 14, were killed while they sat next to their grandfather's grave in the Falluja cemetery in northern Gaza.

In another air strike, a civilian car was hit, killing at least one person. 

Yet another strike killed three children, all siblings, from the al-Nabahin family, according to the Palestinian ministry of health.  

Meanwhile, Palestinian rockets fired from Gaza targeted Ben Gurion international airport, near Tel Aviv, with at least two missiles intercepted by the Iron Dome air defence system, according to Israeli media.

And a barrage of Palestinian rockets was fired towards various Israeli cities on Sunday evening, with sirens sounded in the central cities of Tel Aviv, Rishon Letzion, Bat Yam, Holon, Ramle and Lydd (Lod), as well as the southern cities of Ashkelon and Ashdod.

The blood stains of five children killed by a suspected Israeli air strike inside Falluja cemetery in the northern Gaza Strip on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
The blood stains of five children killed by a suspected Israeli air strike inside Falluja cemetery in the northern Gaza Strip on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

Earlier in the day, funerals had been held for Palestinians killed late on Saturday, when Israeli air strikes that hit two densely populated areas in the Gaza Strip left at least 14 people dead.

Monira Nofal, the aunt of Khalil Abu Hamada, 19, was still in shock after the death of her nephew, who was killed along with five others, including four children, in a suspected Israeli attack on Jabalia camp, north of the Gaza Strip.

"He was his parents' only child, they had him after trying to have a baby for more than 12 years," Nofal told Middle East Eye. 

Israel denied being behind the air strike, but Palestinian sources say it could not have come from anywhere else. 

Also on Sunday morning, scores of Israeli ultra-nationalists, including settlers, stormed Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem.

Protected by heavily armed Israeli forces, the storming began at around 7am local time and continued for three hours, as Israelis marked the Jewish holiday of Tisha B'av. 

During the tours in the courtyards of the mosque, settlers performed religious prayers and raised the Israeli flag, in contravention of long-standing agreements on the site. 

That's a wrap from the Middle East Eye team for now, please continue to follow us for more updates, and check out our Twitter and Instagram for the latest coverage.

Ceasefire takes effect ending three days of Israeli shelling
1 week ago

An Egypt-brokered deal between Palestinian factions in Gaza and Israel has come into effect at 23:30 local time, ending three days of cross-border hostilities.

The weekend-long Israeli bombardment killed at least 44 Palestinians, including 15 children. More than 360 were wounded, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

In Israel, three people were lightly wounded by the shrapnel of Palestinian rockets.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement, the main target of Israel's operation that started on Friday, has claimed victory.

The organisation's chief, Ziyad Nakhla, said that the armed group remained strong after the fighting and that it did not agree to the ceasefire before its conditions were met, including the release of two of its officials arrested in the occupied West Bank by Israel.

Nakhla added that if the two men were not released soon, fighting would be resumed.

Israel also claimed victory.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid said earlier that his government achieved its goals against the PIJ and that there was no benefit to continuing the operation.

Both sides also thanked Egypt and international mediators for their efforts in ending the hostilities.

Islamic Jihad chief says fighting will resume if group's conditions not respected
1 week ago

Ziyad Nakhla, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement's secretary-general, has vowed that if the group's conditions for the ceasefire were not respected by Israel, the fighting would resume.

Speaking at a press conference from Iran, where he is visiting, Nakhla said the deal was agreed under the condition that two high-ranking Islamic Jihad officials from the occupied West Bank were released from Israeli detention. 

The first is Khalil Awawdeh, who has been on hunger strike for more than 145 days protesting against his administrative detention by Israel. 

Awawdeh will be transferred to the hospital on Monday and from there go to his home, Nakhla confirmed. 

The other prisoner is Bassam al-Saadi, whose arrest last week in Jenin sparked tensions that led to the recent round of fighting.

Nakhla claimed victory, saying that Israel's declared goal of destroying the PIJ had failed.

Israel confirms Gaza ceasefire to take effect at 20:30 GMT
1 week ago

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid's office has confirmed that an Egypt-brokered ceasefire ending three days of conflict with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement in the Gaza Strip will come into force on Sunday night. 

The premier's office said in a statement that it "can confirm that a ceasefire will take effect tonight at 23:30 (20:30 GMT). The State of Israel thanks Egypt for its efforts. If the ceasefire is violated, the State of Israel maintains the right to respond strongly."

In photos: Aftermath of suspected Israeli raids on Gaza cemetery and civilian car
1 week ago
(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
The blood stains of five children killed by a suspected Israeli air strike inside Falluja cemetery in the northern Gaza Strip on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
Damage to graves in Falluja cemetery, 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
Palestinians gather in Falluja cemetery, where five children aged between five and 14 were killed by a suspected Israeli air strike on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
A Palestinian child looks through a fence at Falluja cemetery where five children, among them four cousins, were killed by a suspected Israeli strike on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
Civil workers inspect the damage to a civilian car that was targeted by the Israeli army in an air strike, killing at least one Palestinian in central Gaza on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

(MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)
A damaged food cart after an Israeli air strike hit a crossing in central Gaza on 7 August 2022 (MEE/Mohammed al-Hajjar)

Ceasefire to come into effect before midnight
1 week ago

An Egyptian-brokered ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian factions in Gaza will now go into effect at 11:30pm local time (8:30pm GMT), instead of 8pm local time as was reported earlier.

A senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement official said that his organisation had agreed to a proposal by Egypt. 

Under the terms of the agreement, Egypt will commit to working toward the release of two high-ranking Islamic Jihad officials from Israeli prison in the occupied West Bank - Bassam al-Saadi, arrested last week in Jenin, and Khalil Awawdeh, who has been on hunger strike for more than 145 days.

A ceasefire that was set to go into effect at 8pm was deferred after Israel failed to give assurances that Palestinian Islamic Jihad prisoners would be released, according to Al Jazeera Arabic. 

There was no immediate confirmation from the Israeli side.

Nine Palestinian children killed as Israeli raid hits cemetery, death toll rises to 43
1 week ago

In a string of air strikes across the Gaza Strip on Sunday evening, the Israeli army killed nine Palestinian children and wounded others, taking the death toll to 43 killed since Friday, including 15 children, Middle East Eye's correspondent Mohammed al-Hajjar reports.

In one blast, five boys aged between five years old and 14, were killed while they sat next to their grandfather's grave in the Falluja cemetery in northern Gaza, according to eyewitness Mohammad Sami.

"I was watching the boys after they bought something from the grocery store and then went to sit by the grave," Sami told MEE.

Four of the boys were cousins, and the fifth was their friend.

According to Sami, their names were Jameel Nejm Nejm, four or five years old, Mohamad Salah Nejm, seven or eight, Jameel Ihab Nejm, 14, Hamed Haidar Nejm, 14 or 16, and Nazmi Abu Karsh. 

"They come to sit here every day. Every day," Sami said. "This is a safe area, they are used to being here."

"After the blast, I saw one of the children's fathers rush to his child before hugging him and taking him to the ambulance. He was speechless." 

In another air strike, a civilian car was hit, killing at least one person. 

Another strike killed three children, all siblings, from the al-Nabahin family, according to the Palestinian ministry of health.  

Reported Egypt-brokered ceasefire fails to hold
1 week ago

A ceasefire that was set to go into effect at 8pm local time (5pm GMT) has been deferred, according to Al Jazeera Arabic and Israeli Channel 12.

Multiple reports said earlier that Egypt had managed to bring Israel and Palestinian factions into an agreement to a ceasefire. 

However, Al Jazeera Arabic said the ceasefire was not finalised after Israel failed to give assurances that Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Bassam al-Saadi, arrested on Monday in the occupied West Bank, would be released as part of the agreement.

Ben Gurion airport targeted, flights halted
1 week ago

Israel's main airport in Lydd near Tel Aviv has been targeted by Palestinian rockets fired from Gaza, with at least two rockets intercepted by the Iron Dome air defence system, according to Israeli media.

Planes heading to Ben Gurion airport were asked to wait before landing and those set for departure were halted and passengers asked to disembark.

There were no immediate reports of any damage or injuries. 

Barrage of Palestinian rockets fired into Israel
1 week ago

A barrage of Palestinian rockets has been fired towards various Israeli cities on Sunday evening, minutes before a ceasefire was reportedly set to go into effect.

Rocket sirens sounded in the central cities of Tel Aviv, Rishon Letzion, Bat Yam, Holon, Ramle and Lydd (Lod), as well as the southern cities of Ashkelon and Ashdod.

Five children killed in new Israeli air strikes
1 week ago

Five Palestinian children have been killed on Sunday evening in fresh Israeli air strikes that hit multiple locations in the Gaza Strip, according to Palestinian media. 

Two were killed near Falluja cemetery in northern Gaza, and three more were killed in an attack that targeted a civilian car in central Gaza. 

This takes the death toll to 36 Palestinians, including 11 children.  

The attacks came less than an hour before a reported ceasefire was set to begin between Israel and Palestinian factions. 

The Egypt-brokered agreement was reported by multiple news agencies, but there have been no official confirmations by either side.