An official security source told Al-Hurra correspondent in Cairo that Egypt announced the agreement of the Palestinian and Israeli sides to a cease-fire, after an exchange of shelling that lasted for five days, in which 33 Palestinians were killed, while two were killed in Israel.
And the Egyptian authorities announced in a statement, of which Al-Hurra obtained a copy, “a cease-fire between the Palestinian and Israeli sides at exactly ten o’clock in the evening (local time) on the 13th of May.”
The cease-fire ends a five-day round of mutual shelling by Israel and the Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip, in which 33 Palestinians were killed, while two were killed in Israel.
The statement added, “Accordingly, the ceasefire agreement, which includes stopping targeting civilians, demolishing homes and targeting individuals, will be adhered to immediately after the implementation of the ceasefire begins.”
Cairo urged the Palestinian and Israeli sides to “implement the agreement.”
For its part, the Israeli prime minister thanked Egypt for its efforts to reach a cease-fire, while the Israeli National Security Council affirmed that “if Israel is attacked, it will continue to do everything it needs to defend itself.”
The Palestinian Prime Minister, Muhammad Shtayyeh, also welcomed the effort made by Cairo, and all partners, to stop the Israeli escalation with the Gaza Strip and stop the bloodshed of the Palestinian people.
Shtayyeh called on the United Nations and all humanitarian organizations to work to “hold the perpetrators who continue to commit their crimes accountable, and to practice their violations against citizens in the West Bank.”
Shtayyeh called for the need to “stop storming and bombing citizens’ homes, confiscating their lands and destroying their property, and stopping arming settlers who commit crimes of arson, erasure and genocide.”
The Palestinian Prime Minister stressed the need to provide international protection for the Palestinian people from attacks by soldiers and settlers, calling on the Ministry of Health to provide medical supplies and aid to the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Shortly before the agreement entered into force, Palestinian militants fired rockets at Israeli areas, according to AFP correspondents.
In response to the rocket fire, Israeli warplanes launched raids on “three missile launchers and a military site used by the terrorist Islamic Jihad movement for training in the Gaza Strip,” according to an Israeli army statement.
The round of violence erupted on Tuesday when Israel targeted three leaders of the Islamic Jihad movement, and among the dead Palestinians were six military leaders who were directly targeted by Israel, civilians, including children, and fighters from Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front.
The Israeli army said that at least 1,200 missiles were fired towards Israel, 300 of which were intercepted by the air defense system, while residents of the areas bordering Gaza have been living in bomb shelters for four days.
The Gaza Strip, with a population of 2.3 million people suffering from poverty and unemployment, has been subject to an Israeli blockade since Hamas took control of it in 2007, and it has fought a number of wars with Israel since 2008.