Despite reports that a ceasefire will reduce the intensity of riots on the Gaza border Friday, the IDF will still be deploying thousands of soldiers along the border fence, in anticipation of unrest that could develop. While reports in Arab media Thursday said that Egypt had brokered a temporary ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, which would be in effect until at least Sunday, sources in Hamas and Islamic Jihad were quoted as saying that the riots would continue, and that the terror groups would use “new tactics” to continue its campaign against Israel. The sources did not specify what those tactics were.
Reports in Arab media Thursday said that Gaza terror groups had agreed to halt their campaign of balloon terror attacks against Israel. In addition, they agreed to stop burning tires on the Gaza border fence. Demonstrations will still continue at the fence, but they will be “nonviolent,” the report on the Quds network said.
In return for the ceasefire, Israel has agreed to expand the zone Gaza fishermen can trawl – a move that was announced Wednesday, with Israel expanding the zone from six miles off the Gaza coast to nine miles. In addition, Israel will allow more gas and fuel into Gaza, in order to allow for more hours of electricity in the Strip, and to allow the United Nations to continue with infrastructure and construction projects that are already under way.
The agreement, said the report, is the result of efforts by Egypt, which has been trying to broker a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. Last weekend, reports said that there had been good progress toward that agreement, but despite the alleged progress, Israel was hit with 40 rockets overnight Friday. According to the report Thursday, Egyptian intelligence chief will officially announce the ceasefire deal in the coming days.
Early Thursday, a Gaza Arab terrorist was killed in an explosion in central Gaza. A second terrorist was badly injured. Israeli officials said they believed that the explosion was due to a “work accident,” with a bomb exploding as the terrorists were preparing it.