After 50 days of fighting, Israel, Hamas and the other Palestinian factions agreed on Tuesday to a cease-fire of unlimited duration.
At least half the members of the diplomatic-security cabinet opposed the agreement, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided to accept it without bringing it to a discussion or vote in that forum.
A mortar shell fired from Gaza shortly before the cease-fire took effect at 7 P.M. Tuesday killed two in a town near the border, raising the Israeli death toll since Operation Protective Edge began to 70. At least six Palestinians well killed in Israeli strikes across Gaza on Tuesday; the Palestinian death toll has surpassed 2,100.
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For Tuesday's live updates, click here
Latest updates [Wednesday]:
4:19 P.M. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon are scheduled to hold a press conference Wednesday evening at 8:15 P.M. Israel time. (Barak Ravid)
4:11 P.M. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman warned on his Facebook page against making deals with Hamas.
"As long as Hamas rules in Gaza, it will be impossible to guarantee security to Israeli citizens and impossible to reach a diplomatic agreement," he wrote. "Hamas is not a partner for any arrangement, be it diplomatic or security-related. It's impossible and forbidden to rely on worthless murderers."
Lieberman wrote that for these reasons he opposes the cease-fire under which Hamas will be able to strengthen and wage another fight against Israel at its own convenience.
"As long as Hamas isn't defeated, the rocket and tunnel threats remain," he wrote. "We must stand firm that Hamas make no political gains through this cease-fire." (Barak Ravid)
12:51 P.M. Over the past two days, Hamas has arrested 15 suspected of collaborating with Israel, sources say. According to the report, the suspects' text messages led to their arrests. (Jack Khoury)
11:00 A.M. Israel's military operation in Gaza adversely affected U.S.-Israeli relations, Martin Indyk tells Foreign Policy magazine, according to Israel National News.
“There is currently much tension between the countries. The person relationship between the President (Obama) and the Prime Minister (Netanyahu) has been tense for some time, and has been made even more complicated due to recent events,” Israel National News quoted Indyk as saying.
7:40 A.M. The IDF arrests nine Palestinians in the West Bank overnight.
12:50 A.M. The name of the second man who was earlier killed by a mortar shell in kibbutz Nirim is Shachar Melamed, 43. Melamed, was married to Anat, had three children. His family describes him as a dedicated father and family man. (Shirly Seidler)
12:17 A.M. One of the two victims in the mortar attack earlier on kibbutz Nirim, in the Eshkol Regional Council, is Ze'ev Etzion, 55. Etzion was a father of five. (Shirly Seidler)
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