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Israeli delegation in Cairo within hours for Gaza talks

"The delegation will be sent to Cairo within hours," Israeli Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Amira Oron told Anadolu Agency Tuesday by phone. She linked the move to a 72-hour ceasefire, which already came into effect at 8:00am (0500 GMT). Oron said Israeli troops had already pulled out of the Gaza Strip, but would remain on the border to immediately respond to any ceasefire breach. The ceasefire started amid hopes that it will hold to give the two sides enough time to reach a durable truce. On Friday, a similar ceasefire crumbled two hours after it had come into effect when Israel resumed its aerial strikes against the blockaded Gaza Strip, claiming thatGaza-based groups had kidnapped an Israeli soldier. Israel later declared that the soldier had been killed in combat. Israel had pounded the blockaded Gaza Strip – home to 1.8 million people – since July 7. At least 1867 Palestinians, mostly civilians, were killed and 9450 wounded in the unrelenting Israeli attacks. The Israeli army, for its part, has confirmed the killing of 64 troops in Gaza combat operations. Gaza-based resistance factions, meanwhile, had continued to fire rockets at Israeli cities, killing three civilians. The offensive – codenamed "Operation Protective Edge," was the self-proclaimed Jewish state's third major offensive against the densely-populate Gaza Strip within the last six years.

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