Separately, The Times grossly misrepresents Hamas' ongoing rocket attacks against the Gaza envelope communities with the following claim: "Palestinian fire was mostly calibrated to hit border areas rather than population centers".
As Yousef Munayyer, executive director of the U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights, put it, the "current Israeli bombardment sequence in Gaza started when the Israeli military killed two Palestinians, lied about why, and later admitted to doing so just as a high level Palestinian delegation was on its way to Cairo to discuss longer term cease-fire".
Egypt and the United Nations intervened to broker the ceasefire and prevent Israel from launching another war on Gaza after tensions escalated in recent weeks.
"The well-being of 2 million people, half of whom are children, is at stake". Nevertheless, there is no indication that Israel's "waves of attacks against targets across Gaza" was in response to the scores of Palestinian rocket attacks targeting Israeli civilians.
Nearly 200 rockets and mortar shells were fired from within Gaza by Hamas and other Palestinian movements at towns and villages in Israel, provoking a similar number of attacks by the Israeli Air Force.
A second Palestinian official with knowledge of the talks said the cease-fire would begin at 2045 GMT.
Code Red incoming rocket alerts, however, continue to activate in various communities around the south; earlier in the day, an advanced, medium-range Qassam rocket was sacked at the central Negev city of Be'er Sheva. Twenty-five miles from the border, air raid sirens rang out in Israel's main southern city Beersheba.
A spokesman for Israel's Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories said Israel had not imposed any import restrictions on solar panel technology and did not consider it to be "dual purpose".
Israel responded by hitting the multi-storey building, first with small bombs apparently so that people would evacuate, then flattening it to the ground with a huge blast that shook the city and raised clouds of dust and smoke. One of the officials said "they consider this round of escalation over".
Israel captured Gaza in a 1967 war but withdrew in 2005, while holding onto most of the separate West Bank, where Palestinians have limited self-rule.
The protests are partly meant to draw attention to the Israeli-Egyptian blockade imposed after Hamas took control of Gaza in 2007.
Gaza's militant Islamic Hamas rulers and Israel appeared to be honoring a cease-fire Friday that ended two days of an intense flare-up in violence amid efforts by neighboring Egypt to negotiate between the two sides.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's security cabinet said in a statement late Thursday that it had directed the Israeli military "to continue taking strong action" against militants in Gaza. The Israeli army said in a statement that forces struck 150 "terror targets".
"Hamas must go back to the understandings after the [2014 Gaza war], and if it doesn't, it will understand the hard way", Haaretz quoted the officer as saying. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.