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Gaza ceasefire between Islamic Jihad and Israel takes effect

Egyptian sources announced late on Sunday that a ceasefire agreement was reached between Islamic Jihad and Israel

Egyptian sources announced late on Sunday that a ceasefire agreement was reached between Islamic Jihad and Israel to take effect from 11:30pm local time. Officials on both sides confirmed the agreement and thanked Egypt's mediators.

According to Islamic Jihad leader Ziyad Al-Nakhalah in a press conference in Tehran, the Israeli occupation authorities "surrendered" to the movement's conditions. During the ceasefire talks, it apparently called for the release of senior figure Bassam Al-Saadi, who was detained and beaten by Israeli occupation forces a week ago in Jenin.

The situation of Khalil Awawdeh was also raised. He has been on a hunger strike in an Israeli prison for 148 days.

Egypt pledged to follow up these issues on condition that Islamic Jihad and the other factions involved in the response to the Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip stop firing rockets towards the occupation state.

READ: Israel: We have bank of targets in Gaza

Meanwhile, in an official statement reported by local media, the Israeli government confirmed that it reached an agreement to halt its airstrikes on Gaza. The Times of Israel said that Israeli governments traditionally leak confirmation of agreements with the Palestinian resistance movements via unnamed sources to preserve the thin pretence that they do not negotiate with "terrorists". This did not happen on this occasion.

Media reports said that the government statement thanked Egypt for its efforts in securing an end to the "fighting" after four days.

During Israel's bombardment of Gaza between Friday and Sunday, 44 Palestinians were killed, including 15 children and four women, and 360 were wounded.

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