After days of brutal attacks against Palestinians that have claimed the lives of at least 35 people – almost all of them Palestinians, Israel and Islamic Jihad agreed to a ceasefire on this Saturday.
The latest rounds of violence of the Israeli forces against Palestinians that in less than a week, left at least 35 Palestinians killed, was concluded with a ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group this Saturday evening. The ceasefire, which was proposed and mediated by Egypt, was declared to take effect at 10 p.m. local time on Saturday and put an end to the bloodiest episode of direct fight between Israel and Palestine’s Islamic Jihad group since the 10-day war back in 2021.
Appreciating Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi for his role in concluding the ceasefire, the head of Israel’s National Security Council Tzachi Hanegbi said that Israel is grateful for “Egypt’s vigorous efforts to bring about a ceasefire”. Hanegbi further noted that Israel’s response to the Egyptian initiative means “quiet will be answered quietly, and if Israel is attacked or threatened, it will continue to do everything it needs to do in order to defend itself.”
A statement from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office also echoed the same appreciating for Egypt and hoped “extending more ties between Tel Aviv and Cairo”. For its part, Hamas, the militant Palestinian movement that runs the Gaza Strip, issued a statement and praised Palestinian resistance factions after the ceasefire appeared to take hold.
In the statement, Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qasem said that the group “hails the Joint Operations Room of the Palestinian Resistance Factions for defending the Palestinian people against the most recent Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip”. He also added that “the unity of the Palestinian resistance is evidence of the Israeli occupation’s failure to provoke strife within the resistance.”
UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland also reacted to the ceasefire between Israel and Islamic Jihad and urged “all sides” to observe the agreement. “I look forward to the immediate restoration of humanitarian access and all social and economic measures to support Palestinian livelihoods in Gaza,” Wennesland said this Sunday.
Israel has no real intention to end the bloodshed
What is worth noticing about the Saturday truce agreement between Israel and Palestine’s Islamic Jihad group is that it was meant to end a round of attacks from both parties while the casualties were, as mentioned above, almost only Palestinians. In other words, of all the 35 causalities of the recent days, 33 were Palestinians and only two Israeli were killed.
Nevertheless, less than a few hours after the announcement of the truce agreement, Israeli military officials claimed that sirens continued to sound in Israel, warning of incoming rocket fire from Palestine. A rocket launched from Gaza killed a Palestinian man working in Israel and seriously wounded another, Israel medical authorities said Saturday, as cross-border fire showed little signs of easing.
This was enough excuse for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to launch more airstrikes on targets in Gaza, minutes before the ceasefire was due to come into effect. The IDF also claimed that after the ceasefire, more than 1,200 rockets have been launched at Israel, making Israeli forces to retaliate and strike more than 370 targets in Gaza as part of its “Shield and Arrow” campaign. Videos from Gaza showed that the airstrikes appeared to have also hit at least two civilian homes in the northern Gaza Strip on Saturday, with at least two Palestinian men being killed.