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Israel Accepts Ceasefire

16 July 2014

Israel Accepts Ceasefire

1. Israel accepted the Egyptian proposal for a ceasefire starting today 15 July, 09:00 Israel time. Israel accepted the ceasefire in order to allow for sustained quiet to be achieved diplomatically.

2. Israel reserves its right of self-defense.

If Hamas continues to fire rockets, Israel is prepared to continue and intensify the operation to protect its people. Hamas will bear responsibility for the consequences of continued rocket fire.

No country would sit idly by while its civilian population is subjected to terrorist rocket fire.

3. Israel hopes that the ceasefire will allow civilians on both sides to return to normal life.

Israel does its utmost to prevent harm to uninvolved civilians in Gaza and responsibility for casualties lies squarely on Hamas which used its own population as human shields.

At the same time that Hamas was deliberately placing the residents of Gaza in the path of danger, it targeted Israeli civilians with over 1,000 rockets in the past week. The people of Israel showed great resilience in the face of constant bombardment. Their discipline in following civil defense instructions and the effectiveness of the Iron Dome missile defense system meant that there were few Israeli casualties.

4. Israel shares the international community's desire to restore calm. It also shares an interest with other moderate forces in the region in promoting stability.

Israel's decision to accept the ceasefire proposal strengthens the already existing international support for Israel's right of self-defense in the face of Hamas' aggression.

The international community must continue to support Israel in its attempts to contain the terrorist threat emanating from Gaza and not wait for an Israeli reaction to act. Containment of the threat should incorporate dismantling the rockets and terrorist infrastructure.

ENDS

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