Israel and Palestinians trade fire on Gaza border amid cease-fire talk

IDF destroys Gaza ‘terror tunnel’ extending 900 meters into Israel

Islamic Jihad announced an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire agreement with Israel late Tuesday, after the worst flare-up since a 2014 war.

Hamas political bureau official Khalil al-Haya stated today that the Palestinian factions would be committed to the ceasefire as long as Israel was in compliance as well.

Daoud Shehab, an Islamic Jihad spokesman, said Egyptian officials had been in contact with the group to try to restore calm.

The armed wings of Hamas and Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the firing and said it was in response to Israel's killing of dozens of Palestinians since 30 March, mainly in Gaza border protests.

Three Israeli soldiers were wounded by shrapnel, the military said, after dozens of mortar bombs and rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip, triggering warning sirens in southern Israel throughout the day and after dark.

Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas condemned what he called Israel's "fierce aggression" against the Gaza Strip.

A Palestinian during clashes with Israeli security forces near the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel east of Gaza City.

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An Islamic Jihad source told AFP the ceasefire would go into effect within hours.

The United States is calling on the United Nations Security Council to condemn the Hamas rocket fire against Israel when it meets on Wednesday.

Egypt, which shares a border with both Gaza and Israel, stepped in and convinced Palestinian militant groups to accept a truce.

The Islamic Jihad attack on southern Israel came less than a day after Israel and Russian Federation reportedly reached understandings on the presence of Iranian-backed forces on the Golan Heights near the Israeli border. "The resistance factions will abide by it as long as the Occupation does the same", he added.

Shortly after he spoke, Israel's military began its airstrikes.

Separately on Tuesday morning, Palestinians launched boats from Gaza to protest Israel's blockade, in what they said would be a peaceful demonstration.

Hamas acknowledged it was mostly a symbolic act.

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Several militant projectiles were shot down by Israel's Iron Dome rocket interceptor system, others landed in empty lots and farmland.

Egypt also restricts movement in and out of Gaza on its border.

With most politicians unifying for a serious assault on Hamas if they don't stop attacking, the ball has been squarley placed back in their court.

More than 110 Palestinians have been killed as Israeli troops used live fire to prevent a breach of the border fence.

Israel says its actions are necessary to defend its borders, accusing Hamas of encouraging thousands of Palestinians to break through the border and attack Israelis.

The pretext for the Islamic Jihad attack on Israel was the liquidation of three Islamic Jihad operatives who were attempting to infiltrate into Israel from the Rafah area earlier this week.

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