Egypt Proposes Cease-Fire Between Israel and Hamas Over Gaza

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from The Wall Street Journal,

Israel Says Proposal Is Being Considered ‘Very Seriously’.

Egypt unveiled a proposal for a Tuesday cease-fire to stem a week of fighting between Israel and Hamas, but it wasn’t clear whether the two sides accepted the plan.

A top Israeli official said the country’s security cabinet would gather early Tuesday morning to discuss the Egyptian proposals. “They are being considered very seriously,” he said.

The Egyptian plan would call for a de-escalation of the fighting starting at 0600 GMT on Tuesday, followed by 12 hours of total calm in which Israel stopped air and naval bombardments of Gaza and refrained from a ground offensive in exchange for Hamas and other Palestinian factions holding their fire.

Once the violence has stopped, the proposal calls for Israel to open a crossing between it and Gaza for the “movement of goods and persons.”

Within 48 hours of a cease-fire, Egypt will host “high-level delegations from both the Israeli government and the Palestinian factions” for indirect talks on the terms and implementation of a final truce,” the statement said.

Ismael Haniyeh, Hamas’s leader in Gaza, gave a televised speech Monday night in which he praised militants and criticized Israel, but didn’t say that they had signed on to the plan.

“We are reaching victory,” Mr. Haniyeh said in the speech. He blamed Israel for the war saying it had broken the last cease-fire agreement made in 2012. And he quoted lines from the Koran saying the military success is always possible during Ramadan.

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