Gaza: A truce in fighting came into effect between Israel and Hamas after a dialogue initiated by Egypt on demands from world leaders, reportedly agreeing on unconditional ceasefire suggestions by both the parties.
In the 11-day clashes, over 230 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli bombing campaign and 12 Israelis lost their lives in Hamas's attack. World leaders, including US President Joe Biden, hailed the truce.
The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has urged the world leaders to develop a reconstruction package to help Palestinian people and strengthen their institutions. He also reminded both the parties of the responsibility to carry out serious dialogue on a sustainable solution addressing the root causes of the conflict beyond observing the ceasefire recommendations.
A statement issued from the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office read "the security cabinet had unanimously accepted the recommendations to accept an Egyptian initiative for an unconditional … ceasefire."
Later, Palestinian groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad also confirmed the ceasefire in another statement, saying it would come into force at 2:00 am on Friday.
"This is the euphoria of victory," said Khalil al-Hayya, a senior Hamas figure, in front of a crowd of thousands of Palestinians who had gathered in the streets to celebrate.
Soon after the truce was declared, thousands of people in Gaza and the Palestinian territories poured onto the streets to celebrate the ceasefire, waving flags and flashing V signs for victory.
The United Nations chief welcomed the truce and urged both Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers to observe their cease-fire. He added that the international community must develop a reconstruction package "that supports the Palestinian people and strengthens their institutions".
Israeli strikes on Gaza since May 10 have killed 232 Palestinians, including 65 children, as well as fighters, and have wounded another 1,900, according to the Gaza health ministry.
On the Israeli side, 12 people, including two children, have been killed.