First restrictions lifted as Gaza ceasefire takes hold

Following the ceasefire that went into effect Sunday night, the first restrictions imposed on the communities abutting the Gaza Strip for six days were lifted Monday morning. Residents were free to move away from shelters, roads blocked since last Tuesday were reopened and the rail service between Sderot and Ashkelon is due to run again at midday.  Internal security minister Omer Barlev said that Israel rejected all of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s demands for a ceasefire, including the release of two high-profile West Bank members held in custody.

Jihad fired some 1,100 rockets from Gaza during Israel’s three-day pre-emptive Operation Sunrise; around 200 fell short, and the Iron Dome defense system scored a 96pc interception rate against the remainder.

The IDF conducted air strikes on 170 PIJ locations, including the targeted assassinations of four of its senior officials.


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