Gaza militants announce Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Israel

Ahmed Nasser'We had no idea this building would ever become a target

Ahmed Nasser'We had no idea this building would ever become a target

Kuwait, which represents Arab countries at the council, and Bolivia requested the meeting following the worst flare-up in Gaza since the 2014 war between Hamas and Israel.

The French president also "expressed his solidarity with the affected populations".

The UN Security Council met behind closed doors Tuesday, November 13, to discuss the escalation of violence in the Gaza Strip but there was no agreement on how to address the crisis, diplomats said.

Israel's UN Ambassador Danny Danon earlier said "we will not accept a call for both sides to exercise restraint" and laid the blame for the violence squarely on the Palestinians.

"Every member of the Security Council should ask themselves how they would respond after a barrage of missiles on their country", Danon added.

Egypt is now negotiating a ceasefire.

A senior Israeli diplomatic official appeared to confirm the reported armistice.

The joint command of the Palestinian armed factions in Gaza said in a statement on Tuesday they would abide by a ceasefire "as long as the Zionist enemy does the same".

Palestinians and Israelis held their fire late on Tuesday following an Egyptian mediation effort, bringing a relative calm to the Gaza frontier after the fiercest Israeli aggression on Gaza since the 2014 war.

Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon attends a UN Security Council on May 15, 2018, at UN Headquarters in NY.

"Israel maintains its right to act".

Tuesday's ceasefire did not appear to address any of the underlying issues, including the blockade and Hamas' vast arsenal of rockets, and it was unclear whether United Nations and Egyptian efforts toward a broader deal might resume.

Sirens wailed in southern Israel and tens of thousands of residents had taken cover in shelters as around 460 rockets and mortar rounds were fired from the Gaza Strip, wounding 27 people, including three severely.

The Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted over 100 of them.

Hamas, an Islamic militant group that opposes Israel's existence, seized control of the Gaza Strip from the internationally recognised Palestinian Authority in 2007.

Hamas' military wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, say that it was a Kornet man-portable guided anti-tank missile fired from the Gaza strip and that all the bus' occupants died, which is contrary to Israeli media reports.

In that 50-day war, more than 2,100 Palestinians were killed in Gaza, majority civilians, along with 66 Israeli soldiers and seven civilians in Israel.

Since Monday, Israeli air strikes have killed seven Palestinians.

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