After three days of continuous military offensive in the norther part
of the Gaza Strip, Israeli troops withdrew leaving scenes of
destruction, twenty-three Palestinian dead and hundreds of injuries.
The withdrawal came after Israel and the Palestinian factions in Gaza
officially began a cease-fire at 6 A.M.
The ceasefire came following an agreement reached between Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, and Palestinian factions.
The withdrawal of the Israeli forces came after Israel agreed to a ceasefire declared by Palestinian armed factions. Abbas phoned Israel's Prime Minister on Saturday at night and informed him of the deal.
A Palestinian security source reported that president Abbas ordered on Sunday noon 13.000 security personnel to deploy on the Gaza borders, especially in the northern part of the Gaza Strip, to ensure that no homemade shells will be fired at Israeli areas adjacent to the Gaza Strip.
But the Palestinian factions confirmed that they are committed to the truce and that it will renew the firing of homemade shells if Israel violates the truce.
The northern part of the Gaza Strip, where the military operations were concentrated, is left now with scenes of destruction to dozens of houses and constructions in addition to the destruction in farmlands and hothouses.
Meanwhile, the Al Quds Brigades, the armed wing of the Islamic Jihad, Al Qasam brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, and the Al Aqsa Brigades, the armed wing of Fateh, said that their fighters fired homemade shells at the Israeli Negev town of Sdeort hours after the ceasefire took effect, no injuries were reported.
The three groups said that the shelling came in response to Israeli attacks in the West Bank, especially in Hebron, in the southern part of the West Bank, where two Hamas members were taken prison.
Israeli sources reported that one shell shell hit Sderot, one fell in an open area near Sderot, while a third area landed near a Kibbutz.
An Israeli military official said that Israel will wait several hours to see it the attacks were isolated breaches of the ceasefire.
Palestinian Chief negotiator, Dr. Saeb Erekat, said that Abbas urged all factions to abide by the agreement for the interest of the Palestinian people.