Israel and Hamas agree to Gaza cease-fire

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced a cease-fire in Gaza late on Thursday, following reports to that effect in Israeli media.

One official was quoted as calling the truce “quiet in exchange for quiet”.

A Hamas official confirmed the reports to Reuters news agency, saying that a “mutual and simultaneous” cease-fire would start at 2 a.m. local time on Friday (2300 GMT Thursday).

Hamas called the cease-fire “a victory for the Palestinian people.”

A statement by Netanyahu’s office said the Security Cabinet unilaterally approved the
Egyptian-mediated proposal. However, the statement added that the two sides were still negotiating when the cease-fire would begin.

“The political leaders emphasized that the reality on the ground will be that which determines the future of the campaign,” the statement said.