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Israel´s unilateral cease-fire in Gaza goes into effect


Source: | 01-18-2009 14:47

Special Report:   Israel airstrikes in Gaza

In the Middle East, About four hours ago, Israel began a unilateral ceasefire in the Gaza Strip. That ends -- at least for now -- a three-week Israeli offensive into the Gaza Strip that has left nearly 1,200 people dead. But Hamas is insisting it will continue fighting until all Israeli troops leave Gaza.

Israeli soldiers, one of them is carrying an Israeli flag, return to Israel from the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Jan. 18, 2009. Israel declared a unilateral cease-fire in the Gaza Strip on Sunday meant to end three devastating weeks of war against militants who have traumatized southern Israel for years with rocket attacks. But hours after the truce took hold, militants fired a volley of rockets into Israel, threatening to reignite the violence.(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Israeli soldiers, one of them is carrying an Israeli flag, 
return to Israel from the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, 
Jan. 18, 2009.(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

For the moment, Israel has announced a unilateral halt to its bombardments.

Israel's unilateral ceasefire went into effect at 2 a.m. local time (0000 GMT). Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says Israel's goals have been achieved.