Wednesday, November 21, 2012

truce agreed after bloody Gaza conflict

'Calm must return': truce agreed after bloody Gaza conflict

A deal to end the bloody eight-day conflict in Gaza and Israel has been announced in Egypt overnight and took effect at 9pm local time (6am AEST.)

The details of the deal are unclear, although it is understood Israel had agreed to the truce but would not lift its blockade on the Palestinian territory – a key condition from Hamas and other militant factions in Gaza.

In return Israel had demanded an end of the continual rocket attacks on its southern communities and enhanced efforts from Egypt and others in the international community to prevent Hamas from replenishing its weapons supply.

Against the backdrop of 150 deaths and injuries to more than 800 in Gaza and five deaths and injuring more than 43 in Israel, it is expected that the deal will be welcomed by civilians on both sides of the border who are desperate for the violence to end. (this is how fair the aggression was)

Many feared the bombing of a public bus in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv on Wednesday would derail any possibility of a truce, however the mediated talks continued in Cairo and the breakthrough was announced overnight in a joint media conference Egypt's foreign minister Mohamed Kamel Amr and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

For the ceasefire to hold "the rocket attacks must end and a broader calm must return," Mrs Clinton said.

"Now we have to focus on reaching a durable outcome that promotes regional stability and advances the security, dignity and legitimate aspirations of Palestinians and Israelis alike," she said.

Medical officials said at least 12 people were killed in Gaza on Wednesday (21th), according to medical officials, including a two-year-old boy and a four-year-old girl, as Israel continued its deadly campaign of air strikes in the densely populated coastal strip.

Militants in Gaza fired nearly 1400 rockets into Israel since the military offensive began last Wednesday (14th Nov'12), the Israeli Defence Forces said, while Israel has carried out more than 1500 strikes on Gaza during the same time period.  (fair bombing defence vs cheap rockets)

The agreement requires Israel to end “incursions and assassinations” but it does address longer-term humanitarian, economic, and political problems caused by Israel's blockade of Gaza.

It was also unclear whether Egypt had agreed to do address the flow of weapons from Libya and the Sudan via the network of tunnels from its territory in the Sinai into Gaza. (should not be part of negotiations, if Israel attacks again then Gaza has no defense at all)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to make a statement at 8.30pm local time to reveal further details of the truce deal.

Israel launched its current offensive a week ago with the killing of Hamas military leader Ahmed Jabari, and had massed thousands of soldiers as well as tanks on its southern border, threatening a ground invasion if the rocket strikes from militants continued. (Israel is to attack but not to be responded, that is fair :( )

The agreement stipulated that Israel should stop targeted assassinations against Palestinians, while the Palestinian resistance should stop firing missiles and explosives devices, deputy chief of Hamas Mousa Abu Marzouk said on al-Jazeera.

If the initial phase of the ceasefire holds an "ongoing dialogue will start within 24 hours", the Guardian reported.

According to Agence-France Press the deal reads: "Israel shall stop all hostilities on the Gaza Strip land sea and air including incursions and targeting of individuals.

"All Palestinian factions shall stop all hostilities from the Gaza Strip against Israel, including rocket attacks and attacks along the border.

"Opening the crossings and facilitating the movement of people and transfer of goods and refraining from restricting residents free movement and targeting residents in border areas and procedures of implementation shall be dealt with after 24 hours from the start of the ceasefire."

Despite being warned to stay indoors until the Hamas leadership can assess whether the violence has really ended with the ceasefire, some Gazans have taken to the streets, driving around flying flags and beeping horns in celebration, while fireworks are being fired from some hotels and houses.

The Gaza Strip's streets have mostly been deserted for the last week as civilians - terrified of Israeli airstrikes and the enormous human cost they've caused - stayed in hiding indoors.

Ruth Pollard, Gaza City - November 22, 2012

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Israel's Violence on Palestenians

Right to Defend itself

Israel has always cried 'holocaust' tears to the world while singing the old tune of "Defending itself and its citizens". How do they do it? By banning or killing international journalists by bribing their supportive governments. Palestine is destroyed as a State so is Gaza. Meanwhile the "chronically suffering Israel" has developed to a point it does not need Uncle Sam anymore, see their infrastructure, see their military development up to nuclear programs... and they are the eternal "poor" in need. -- --