#Israel and #Hamas agree to Egypt’s proposal for 72-hour ceasefire

The Guardian reports: A definitive end to the four-week conflict in Gaza appeared possible on Monday night, with reports that Hamas and Israel had accepted a 72-hour ceasefire.

The ceasefire could be declared as early as 8am on Tuesday morning, clearing the way for further discussions about ending the four-week war in Gaza.

Representatives of Palestinian factions had been in Cairo since Sunday to agree a set of demands and a possible end to hostilities. More than 1,800 Palestinians have died, health officials in Gaza say. Israeli casualties include 64 soldiers and three civilians killed by rocket fire.

The new proposal was communicated late on Monday night to the Israelis, who accepted the ceasefire plan around midnight.

“Israel will be honouring the ceasefire from tomorrow [Tuesday] at 8:00am [0500 GMT],” an Israeli official told Agence France Presse on condition of anonymity.

The official confirmed an Israeli delegation would be heading to Cairo for talks.

Ziad al-Nakhala, deputy secretary-general of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, had earlier told the Guardian that he believed a deal will be reached.

At least one key issue for Israel – of cross-border tunnels that allow infiltration by militants – had not been discussed, al-Nakhala said, but Egyptian officials accepted the need to ease the siege of Gaza. [Continue reading…]

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