A three-day cease-fire agreed to by Israeli and Palestinian representatives meeting in Egypt has begun. Officials of both sides confirmed the agreement to NBC News on Monday as fighting resumed shortly after a seven-hour humanitarian break ended.
Israel was planning to pull its ground forces out of Gaza by the start of the cease-fire at 8 a.m. Tuesday (1 a.m. ET). "After the destruction of 32 terror tunnels, from 0800 the #IDF will implement a 72 hour cease fire, from defensive lines, outside of #Gaza," Israeli Defense Forces spokesman Lt. Col Peter Lerner said via Twitter.
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Bassam Al-Salhi, head of the Palestinian People's Party, who is part of a meeting of leaders of major Palestinian groups in Cairo, told NBC News that the Palestinians had signed on to the three-day truce to open the door for more comprehensive negotiations. A senior Israeli official told NBC News that the Israeli cabinet had accepted the proposal, which was brokered by the Egyptian government. Earlier Monday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israeli action in Gaza would continue until Gaza was "demilitarized" and "a prolonged period of quiet and security" was achieved.
The agreement came as Israeli airstrikes resumed on Gaza within minutes of the expiration of a seven-hour cease-fire to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza. Israel, meanwhile, said an attack on a bus in Jerusalem killed one person.
— M. Alex Johnson, Lisa McNally and Tracy Snyder