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72-hour ceasefire to be declared in Cairo: Official

Posted on Aug 05 2014 | IANS

Gaza, Aug 5 : A senior Palestinian official said Monday that an agreement on a 72-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip is expected to be declared in the Egyptian capital of Cairo, media reports said.

The remarks were made by Zeyad Nakhallah, a senior Islamic Jihad leader, who is attending talks with the Egyptian officials in Cairo on mediating a ceasefire with Israel, Xinhua reported citing Al-Kitab TV.

Cairo is currently hosting a united delegation of various Palestinian factions, including Fatah, Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, for talks on the Egyptian bid for a truce in Gaza.

Meanwhile, Mushir al-Masri, a senior Hamas leader, said in a statement that the talks in Cairo are positive, but added that "I can't say that an agreement has yet been reached".

Late in the day, two children and a woman were killed during the renewed Israeli airstrikes on the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah right after the end of an Israeli unilateral humanitarian ceasefire in the coastal enclave, according to the health ministry in Gaza.

The toll in Gaza has climbed to 1,868 and 9,470 others have been wounded since the Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip started July 8, said the health ministry in Gaza. On the other side, at least 64 Israeli soldiers and three civilians have been killed so far, according to reports.

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