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Gaza-Israel violence continues despite truce

August 22, 2011

Cross-border exchanges of air strikes and rocket attacks between Israel and the Gaza Strip have continued for a third day, despite Palestinian factions having agreed to an informal ceasefire on launching rockets into Israel.

The agreement was reached “on condition that Israel halts its attacks”, a Hamas official told the AFP news agency late on Sunday night.

Mark Regev, the spokesman for the Israeli prime minister, told Al Jazeera that the Israeli government was not commenting on reports of a truce.

The ceasefire calls came hours after the Arab League condemned the Israeli raids on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip during an “urgent meeting” in Cairo. The bloc called on the international community “to put pressure on Israeli occupation authorities … to halt this brutal assault”.

The meeting came a day after Israeli ministers held their own emergency session on Saturday night to discuss the violence, after an Israeli man was killed that evening by a rocket strike in the southern city of Beersheva.

Shortly after announcement of the informal accord, two rockets from Gaza fell near the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon, Israeli officials said.

The explosions were followed by fresh Israeli air strikes against Jabaliya in northern Gaza and Khan Younis refugee camp in the strip’s south, Gaza residents said.

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