Today in History: Israel-Hamas Agree to a Cease Fire

Today in History: Israel-Hamas Agree to a Cease Fire

Peace on the Border_by_ Rifka Boaz_Passow Collection of Israel Children's Peace Art


On November 21st, 2012, Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr and United States Secretary of State Hilary Clinton announced a cease fire between Israel, a Middle Eastern country on the Mediterranean Sea regarded as biblical Holy Land, and Hamas, a Palestinian Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist, militant, and nationalist organization, that would take effect at 21:00 GMT+2. This ceasefire resulted after an eight-day, intensive war campaign, known as "Operation Pillar of Defense" in the Hamas-governed Gaza strip; the conflict was precipitated by the killing of Chief Ahmad Jabari via Israeli airstrike and the consequent launch of 100 rockets over Israel.

In the terms of agreement, as published in Haaretz and announced by the Office of the Egyptian President: 

  • Israel shall stop all hostilities in the Gaza Strip land, sea and air including incursions and targeting of individuals.
  • All Palestinian factions shall stop all hostilities from the Gaza Strip against Israel including rocket attacks, and all attacks along the border.
  • Opening the crossings and facilitating the movements of people and transfer of goods, and refraining from restricting residents' free movements, and targeting residents in border areas and procedures of implementation shall be dealt with after 24 hours from the start of the ceasefire.
  • Other matters as may be requested shall be addressed.

Implementation involved:

  • Setting up the zero hour for the Ceasefire Understanding to enter into effect.
  • Egypt shall receive assurances from each party that the party commits to what was agreed upon.
  • Each party shall commit itself not to perform any acts that would breach this understanding. In case of any observations, Egypt – as the sponsor of this understanding – shall be informed to follow up.

However, in 2014 the cease fire agreement grew increasingly unstable as nations saw increases in cross-border shootings, rockets, and mortars from Gaza, as well as infiltrations, airstrikes, and assassinations by Israel Defense Forces (IDF).  To this day, governments and grassroots' organizations are working towards peace in a longstanding conflict whose roots can be traced to the "Six Day War" or "June War" in 1967 which was fought between Israel and a coalition of Arab states that included Egypt, Syria, and Jordan.

The following articles are drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.




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