JERUSALEM (CBS News/CBSDC/AP) — Israel said a new cease-fire with the militant Hamas group was holding in the Gaza Strip Monday morning, a day after the two sides agreed to resume talks in Cairo.
The military said no rockets were fired Monday morning at Israel and that the military hadn’t targeted any locations in the densely populated territory since the cease-fire went into effect on midnight Sunday.
The quiet was meant to allow for the resumption of talks on a long-term truce to end a month of heavy fighting in Gaza that has killed More than 1,900 Palestinians. On the Israeli side, 67 people have died, all but three of them soldiers. It has been the worst violence since Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip with an election victory in 2007.
Palestinian negotiators have been pressing for an end to the crippling Gaza blockade imposed by Egypt and Israel eight years ago, while Israel wants all Gaza militants to be disarmed.
Israeli officials said Sunday that they had accepted Egypt’s latest offer for a truce, but added they were wary after the process broke down last week.
Israel initially walked away from cease-fire talks over the weekend after militants resumed their rocket fire on southern Israel, but the negotiators for the Jewish state reportedly returned Monday morning to Cairo to resume talks.
The halt in shelling in Gaza was allowing aid groups to get some humanitarian aid into the battered Palestinian territory, and the government of Turkey to evacuate some of the residents most urgently in need of help. Four Palestinians arrived Monday in Ankara — the first evacuees of what was expected to be dozens flown out over the coming days under a deal agreed by Turkey and Israeli officials in Cairo.
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