Islamic Jihad official says Gaza ceasefire agreed

by Reuters
Thursday, 13 March 2014 12:40 GMT

GAZA, March 13 (Reuters) - An Islamic Jihad leader said on Thursday that Egypt had brokered a ceasefire aimed at ending a two-day flare-up between Israel and Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip.

"Following intensive Egyptian contacts and efforts, the agreement for calm has been restored in accordance with understandings reached in 2012 in Cairo," Khaled al-Batsh wrote on Facebook, referring to a truce that ended an eight-day Gaza war two years ago.

Batsh said Islamic Jihad, a militant group that began launching rockets into Israel on Wednesday after Israeli soldiers killed three of its fighters a day earlier, would hold its fire as long as Israel did the same.

There was no immediate word from Israel, but a senior Defence Ministry official said earlier in the day he expected the fighting to die down soon. (Reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi, Editing by Jeffrey Heller and Kevin Liffey)

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