Israel to open Gaza crossing amid reports of new cease-fire
New rocket attacks descend on Israel's south despite reports that Cairo is working to achieve new truce that would come into effect 10 P.M. Sunday; IAF targets rocket-launching squad in southern Gaza in wake of rocket attacks.
Israel was hit with another volley of rockets launched by Gaza militants, despite reports that Egypt was working to secure a truce between Israel and the Islamic Jihad that would halt all rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip effective 10 P.M.
Earlier Sunday, Channels 10 and 2 cited an unnamed Egyptian official who claimed Cairo was hard at work to obtain a new ceasefire, claiming that the sides had agreed to hold their fire as of Sunday night.
However, as many as three rockets were fired into Israel later than 10 P.M., all of which hitting open field in the Eshkol regional council near the Strip.
IAF targeted the squad responsible for launching the rockets early Monday morning.
Fresh attacks came as Israeli security officials indicated that they had decided to reopen Israel's Kerem Shalom border crossing on Monday to allow the entrance of goods into the coastal enclave after keeping it closed throughout Sunday.
Sources indicated that the decision reflected an official estimation that the current round of violence was nearing its end.
Earlier Sunday, Israel was hit by a fresh volley of rockets launched by militants in the coastal enclave, an attack which, in turn, came after the Israel Defense Forces struck a squad en route to launch a projectile into Israel's south, killing one militant.
A fragile truce had already been declared earlier in the day, after Egypt reportedly managed to convince Islamic Jihad to lay down its arms.
Overall, militants in Gaza have fired dozens of rockets at Israel in recent days.
Speaking of the recent escalation along Israel's border with Gaza, the European Union's High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton condemned the recent flare-up, criticizing the targeting of civilians "wherever they are."
In another response to the recent escalation, the U.S. State Department reminded both parties on Sunday that "violence will not advance, but will impede the hope for peace."
"We urge all parties to stop the violence and engage in direct negotiations, which we believe is the only way to achieve comprehensive peace," State Department Beth Gosselin spokesperson said.
Following the flare-up between Gaza militants and IDF forces, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said earlier Sunday that Israel had no choice but to retaliate when faced with attack, and would stop "every attempt to fire against Israel and anyone who fires anyway".
Netanyahu told ministers gathered for a special cabinet session in Safed that Israel's defense policy was based on two principles: "Kill or be killed" and "He who harms you should bear the blood on his head."