UN Security Council fails to act on Gaza violence

UN Security Council fails to act on Gaza violence

Celebrations are taking place on the streets of Gaza following a ceasefire deal after two days of heavy Israeli bombardment on Gaza.

Israeli troops were noticed by the forces affiliated with Hamas after entering 3 kilometers (2 miles) into Gaza, triggering the armed conflict that resulted in the martyrdom of the Palestinians and the death of the Israeli soldier.

Tuesday's ceasefire did not appear to address any of the underlying issues, including the blockade and Hamas' vast arsenal of rockets, and it was unclear whether United Nations and Egyptian efforts toward a broader deal might resume. But a senior Israeli diplomatic official appeared to confirm the reported armistice.

TRT World's Philip Owira reports.

Hamas and other militant groups say they have accepted an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire to end two days of intense fighting with Israel that had pushed the sworn enemies to the brink of a new war.

Sirens wailed in southern Israel and tens of thousands of residents had taken cover in shelters as around 460 rockets and mortar rounds were fired from the Gaza Strip, wounding 27 people, including three severely.

A Hamas official said the violence erupted on Sunday when a group of its members were fired upon by a passing vehicle belonging to Israel forces. A surprise guided-missile attack on Monday on a bus that wounded an Israeli soldier, the military said.

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Among the dead were Hamas commanders Nour Baraka and Mohammad Al-Qarra, medical officials said.

Hamas, an Islamic militant group that opposes Israel's existence, seized control of the Gaza Strip from the internationally recognized Palestinian Authority in 2007.

Why it matters: The escalating violence risked wrecking weeks of delicate diplomacy between Israel and Hamas as well as regional powers such as Egypt and Qatar aimed at lowering tensions in the Gaza Strip.

"We taught Israel a serious lesson".

Israeli security minister Yuval Steinitz said after a cabinet debate lasting several hours that he knew of no formal truce. In Israel, a 48-year-old Palestinian laborer was killed in a rocket strike on an apartment building where he was staying. "The attitude of the resistance groups will be determined according to the behavior of Israel".

Following the incident, Israel commenced airstrikes on Gaza and Palestinian groups responded with rockets.

Violence has simmered since Palestinians launched weekly border protests on March 30 to demand the easing of the blockade on Gaza and rights to lands lost in the 1948 war of Israel's founding. Most of the rest landed in open fields, but dozens landed inside Israeli cities and towns, killing one person, injuring dozens more, and causing significant property damage.

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