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Israel and Hamas agree on another 72-hour cease-fire


08-11-2014 09:44 BJT

Israel and Hamas have agreed to a three day ceasefire on Sunday, that was set to begin at midnight. The aim of the ceasefire is to achieve a long-term negotiated settlement between both parties, but prospects for achieving a settlement beyond the 72-hour deal appear bleak.

Another 72-hour ceasefire declared between Hamas and Israel. Announced just two days after the previous ceasefire expired.

Two days marked by dozens of rockets and mortar shells fired from Gaza into Israel, and more than a hundred Israeli air strikes on Gaza.

Both sides seemingly reluctant to accept the Egypt-brokered ceasefire agreement

"There is an Egyptian proposal to extend the truce for an additional 72 hours. This proposal is under review, and it will depend on the position of Israel in the midst of the negotiations." Said Sami Abu Zuhri, Hamas Spokesman.

"The operation will continue until its objective - the restoration of quiet over a protracted period - is achieved." Said Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Prime Minister. 

But Israel cannot escape global pressure to cease a month-long military campaign that has claimed nearly two thousand lives and left Gazans without electricity, running water and basic supplies

At the same time, Egypt is pushing Hamas to ease concession demands and halt rocket and mortar fire on Israel’s cities

Negotiations between the parties are scheduled to take place in Cairo on Monday - the aim: a long term agreement that will halt the current fighting and end a cycle of violence between Hamas and Israel that has persisted for years.

Hours before the 72-hour ceasefire was to go into effect, Israel continued striking Gaza, Gaza militants continued firing rockets and mortars onto Israeli cities. Israel’s government has repeatedly said there will be no negotiations as long as the rocket and mortar fire continues. An intelligence analyst here says, Hamas has enough mortar power to continue firing for years. 

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