Egypt is finalising details of a long-term truce deal between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, an Egyptian security source said on Thursday, amid easing tensions on the border of the enclave where some two million Palestinians live. “We are putting the final touches to the terms of the truce that will be signed by all sides, and we expect to announce the terms next week if Fatah helps us to do so,” the source said, referring to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s mainstream party which dominates the occupied West Bank.
Netanyahu and Sisi also examined the possible return of the Palestinian Authority to the territory, an easing of Israel’s blockade and reconstruction of Gaza’s war-scarred infrastructure, the report said. Gaza has seen mass protests since the end of March as Palestinians demand the right to return to homes their families fled or were expelled from in 1948 during the war surrounding the creation of Israel.
“We came here to tell the entire Israeli nation, with all of the Israeli people, that this country is for all of us,” retired Brig. Gen. Amal Assad who spearheaded the Druze campaign against the legislation. “We were born here, we will die here, we love this country, we have defended it, and we will continue to live here together — Jews, Arabs, Druze, Circassians, Bedouins, as equal brothers.
“We are all Israelis,” he said.
Iran is “playing a very, very important role in our common and joint efforts to eliminate terrorists in Syria,” Anatoly Viktorov said in an interview with Israel’s Channel 10 on Monday.
“The Iranian presence in Syria… is fully legitimate according to the UN principles and the UN charter,” Viktorov said. “Therefore, at this stage we think that demands to remove the foreign fighters from Syrian territory are not realistic.”
Palestinian teenager Ahed Tamimi left prison Sunday after an eight-month sentence for slapping two Israeli soldiers, an episode captured on video that made her a symbol of resistance for Palestinians, a prison service spokesman said.
Both Tamimi and her mother were sentenced to eight months in an Israeli military court following a plea deal over the December incident which the family said took place in their yard in Nabi Saleh in the West Bank.
Israel is on high alert as Syrian President Bashar al-Assad regains ground from rebels in the southwest of the country, bringing his forces close to the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. In a sign of high tensions, Israel launched two David’s Sling interceptor missiles at rockets which it said fell inside Syrian territory and were part of the internal fighting there.
Hamas and Israel have announced a ceasefire following an escalation which left four Palestinians and an Israeli soldier dead, but the Israeli minister of foreign affairs warned of a “wide-scale” war on the Gaza Strip.
“With Egyptian and United Nations efforts it has been agreed to return to the era of calm between (Israel) and Palestinian factions,” Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said. However, Israeli minister of military affairs Avigdor Lieberman warned that a new military operation on Gaza “will be larger and more painful than Operation Protective Edge,” referring to the 2014 Israeli war on the coastal enclave.
Israel passed a law on Thursday to declare that only Jews have the right of self-determination in the country, something members of the Arab minority called racist and verging on apartheid. “This is a defining moment in the annals of Zionism and the history of the state of Israel,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the Knesset after the vote.