The cease-fire between Hamas and Israel was respected as of Thursday noon, but Israeli leaders did not close the door on the option to resume the strikes if rockets were being fired from the Gaza Strip.
The terms of the truce include stopping all military operations and plans to open discussions between the two parties 24 hours after its entry into force.
In eight days of bombing, 155 Palestinians were killed by Israeli air strikes, and five Israelis, including a soldier, were victims of rocket attacks owards southern Israel.
Moreover, the Israeli army said Thursday it arrested 55 Palestinians in the West Bank for suspected “terrorist and violent activities.”
“A total of 55 terrorists belonging to different terrorist groups were arrested. Among them are a number of senior officials “of Palestinian groups, the military said, in a statement. The arrests were “an attempt to restore calm in the region,” said the Israeli army.
Just after the entry into force of the cease-fire Wednesday evening celebrations took place in the Palestinian enclave. Sounds of automatic gunfire, firecrackers and chants of “Allahu akbar (God is greatest) were heard through the streets of Gaza.
The Israeli army, for its part, said it had “met the objectives it set in the context of the Pillar of Defense operation and inflicted considerable damage to Hamas and its military capabilities,” according to a statement the army. It claimed to have “damaged and destroyed important strategic capabilities of Hamas.”
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