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Israel and Palestinian groups agree to a 72-hour humanitarian truce in Gaza from 8:00 Jerusalem time (1:00 EDT)

An Israeli diplomatic official said Israel had given its backing to an
Egyptian-brokered truce, despite shunning negotiations in Cairo.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the official said: “We agree to begin implementing the Egyptian initiative.

“If the ceasefire is held there will be no need for any presence of (Israeli) forces in the Gaza Strip.”

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The official said Israel will be watching “with a certain amount of skepticism,” since previous cease-fire plans have quickly collapsed.

This will be the ninth declared cease fire since hostilities began on July 8th.

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