facebook.com/Outlookindia twitter.com/outlookindia digimag.outlookindia.com instagram.com/outlookindia youtube.com/user/OutlookMagazine

Three-Day Gaza Ceasefire Comes Into Effect

File- AP/PTI

Gazans and Israelis had their first quiet morning of calm under seething disquiet as a 72-hour temporary ceasefire came into effect early today after Israel accepted a joint proposal from the US and the UN which took into consideration a key demand by the Jewish state.

Israel had been demanding that any ceasefire deal include a condition that allows its troops to remain in Gaza over the 72-hour truce which it says it would utilise to locate and neutralise tunnels infiltrating into Israel.

The announcement of the temporary truce deal between the two sides while international mediators work on a lasting ceasefire, was made in a statement released in New Delhi, where US Secretary of State John Kerry is on a visit.

Representatives of the Palestinian Authority (PA), which controls the West Bank, and an Israeli delegation are currently in Cairo to work on a sustainable truce beyond the next 72 hours.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders are also camping in the Egyptian capital but talks with Israel are carried out informally through mediators as the militant factions do not recognise the Jewish state.

"We urge all parties to act with restraint until this humanitarian ceasefire begins, and to fully abide by their commitments during the ceasefire," Kerry, along with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in the announcement.

"This ceasefire is critical to giving innocent civilians a much-needed reprieve from violence," they added.

Britain's former prime minister and currently Quartet Representative for Middle East, Tony Blair, in a sigh of relief expressed hopes that the temporary ceasefire would mature into a lasting one saving innocent lives.

"This gives the sides, through the Egyptian mediators, the opportunity to reach a sustainable arrangement that will address Israel's security concerns, as well as ensure a better future for Gazans," Blair said.

Other world leaders have also welcomed the 72-hour ceasefire deal hoping to convert it into a more permanent one.

The PA delegation is likely to be headed by President Mahmoud Abbas himself who had earlier expressed dismay at being left out in international efforts to work out a ceasefire agreement.

The international community recognises PLO and the PA as the sole legitimate representatives of the Palestinian masses.

The Israeli delegation at the talks will include internal security agency Shin Bet chief, Yoram Cohen, and the head of the Policy and Political-Military Affairs department in the Defense Ministry, Amos Gilad.

Palestinian media reported that the PA leadership was working alongside Egypt, UN, Qatar, Turkey, US, Russia and others to reach a long-term truce.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian death toll in the ongoing Israeli assault on Gaza surpassed that of Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009 as the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli attacks reached 1,450 yesterday in its 25th day.

According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, 1,417 Palestinians were killed during Operation Cast Lead, which was the longest conflict between the two sides lasting 22 days, before the current fighting began.

The death count on the Israeli side also saw a significant increase with 61 soldiers killed this time compared to 10 in 2008-09. Three Israeli civilians and a Thai national working in Israel also died in rocket and mortar attacks.

READ MORE IN:
PLACES: IsraelPalestineGaza
SECTION: International
OUTLOOK 01 August, 2014
© Copyright PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of any PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.
Download the Outlook ​Magazines App. Six magazines, wherever you go! Play Store and App Store

Post a Comment

You are not logged in, please Log in or Register
  • Daily Mail
THE LATEST ISSUE
CLICK IMAGE FOR CONTENTS
OUTLOOK ON TWITTER
POLLS

The cricket icon is reported to have tried to curry favour with Defence Minister Parrikar for a friend's property adjoining defence land in Mussoorie. Parrikar is said to have declined to help. The recipient of India's top honour is also busy endorsing various products. Is India's legendary batsman insulting the Bharat Ratna, which was given to him after amending rules?

POLL STARTED ON: Jul 19, 2016
Quiz
Ramzan is the month of intense prayer, dawn-to-dusk fasting and nightly feasts for millions of Muslims to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad. As the world celebrates Eid al-Fitr to mark the end of Ramzan, take this quiz to find out how well you know it. Eid Mubarak!
QUIZ STARTED ON: Jul 06, 2016