Photos capture joy in Gaza's streets as Israel-Hamas truce begins after 11 days of violence

Business Insider US
Fatima Shbair/Getty Images
  • An unconditional ceasefire between Israel and Hamas began at 02:00 on Friday.
  • People celebrated the truce, which put a pause on 11 days of constant aerial bombardments.
  • Gaza's health ministry said 232 Palestinians were killed and more than 1,900 were wounded in the conflict. Israel reported at least 12 dead.
  • See more stories on Business Insider SA's home page.

The conflict began on 10 May after Israeli police officers clashed with worshippers at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem's old city during the last ten nights of Ramadan.

On the first day of violence, more than 20 people were killed.

The peace deal, which was brokered by Egypt, is meant to end more than ten days of violence and fighting between the two factions. 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would take part in an international effort to rebuild Gaza, but was quick to clarify that he would work with the Palestinian Authority — a semi-autonomous group representing much of the Palestinian territories — and not Hamas.

Palestinians in Gaza poured into the streets to celebrate the Israel-Hamas ceasefire.

Children flash the peace sign during the city-wide celebrations.
Fatima Shbair/Getty Images

For its part, Hamas said "the Palestinian resistance will abide by this agreement as long as the occupation abides by it," according to The New York Times.

Gaza's health officials say 232 Palestinians were killed and more than 1,900 were wounded during the conflict - which was the worst fighting that the region has seen in years.

The bulk of these deaths have been civilians. At least 60 of those killed were children

Israel claimed that a recent strike on a Hamas that killed 42 civilians in their homes was an "accident" that lead to "unintended consequences."

Israel reported that at least 12 of its citizens were killed in the violence. 

The BBC and AP reported that air strikes were burying families in the rubble of their own homes, killing children as young as 5. 

Around 72,000 people were displaced during the bombardments and were forced into shelters set up by the United Nations in schools.

Men carried each other up the street during the celebration.
MOHAMMED ABED/AFP via Getty Images

Source: The New York Times 

According to the Guardian, the airstrikes have also taken a huge toll on the city's healthcare system. Multiple medical facilities were damaged during the strikes, while others suffered severe medicine and supply shortages. 

CNN reported that on top of having to deal with injuries, the city's doctors are also bracing to deal with a surge in Covid cases — as makeshift shelters may soon turn into hotbeds for the virus.

Celebrations continued into the wee hours, though some are skeptical that the fragile peace will hold.

Children joined their parents to commemorate the moment.
MOHAMMED ABED/AFP via Getty Images

During the last round of major conflicts between the two, in 2014, nine separate ceasefires were called before a lasting, if tense, peace was found. 

Al Jazeera wrote that the ceasefire was called after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office announced that his security cabinet had voted unanimously to accept the Egyptian-mediated truce.

The AP reported that senior Hamas official Khalil al-Hayya called the truce a "victory" when he addressed a crowd in Gaza City.

He also claimed that Israel had not destroyed Hamas's military capabilities and that its fighters were "striding proudly" in its network of underground tunnels.

Read the original article on Insider

Receive a daily news update on your cellphone. Or get the best of our site emailed to you

Go to the Business Insider front page for more stories.

Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo