|ASIA NEWS REPORT: This morning a woman was killed in Rafah and an elderly man in Khan Younes. Overnight, Israeli aircraft carried out 25 raids. 25% of the deaths in Gaza are children. This morning the Netanyahu government decided to accept the truce. Hamas has rejected it demanding an end of the blockade of the Gaza Strip, the opening of the Rafah crossing and the release of some prisoners. |
Jerusalem (AsiaNews / Agencies) - An Egyptian brokered ceasefire put before Israel and Hamas this morning, has been accepted by the Netanyahu government but rejected by the Palestinian militants. Yesterday it had seemed that not even Israel would accept.
Cairo's truce proposal was scheduled to begin this morning at 6am. This morning, however, a man and a woman were killed in Gaza. The woman was killed in Rafah, near the border with Egypt; the elderly man, was killed in Khan Younes.
Their death was caused by the 25 raid, Israeli aircraft carried out last night on the Strip in response to rockets fired by Hamas militants against the cities of southern Israel.
In one week the Israeli raids have left 188 dead and over 1,300 injured. Palestinian hospital sources say that 25% of those killed are children; The UN says that two-thirds of those killed were civilians. From the Israeli side, in one week Hamas fired at least 800 rockets, causing widespread damage and wounding four Israelis, some seriously.
The Egyptian truce proposal was welcomed by the Arab League and the United States and was carefully studied by the Israeli government until their decision to accept it this morning. The Israelis want their people to be able to live without fear of rocket fire from the Strip. In fact the air raids were aimed at wiping out the rocket launching sites.
Hamas has rejected the Egyptian proposal because it requires a comprehensive agreement with Israel. The militant organization demands an end to air raids, but also the end of the Gaza blockade, in place since 2006, the opening of the Rafah crossing into Egypt and the release of prisoners arrested again after being released, following exchange agreement with the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in 2011.
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