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Israel: Militants in Gaza fire rockets after cease-fire

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11/26/2006 10:11 AM
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Israel: Militants in Gaza fire rockets after cease-fire
JERUSALEM (CNN) -- Palestinian militants in Gaza launched rocket attacks into Israel on Sunday, Israeli police and army officials said, hours after a cease-fire in Gaza was agreed upon by the Israeli government and Palestinian factions.

After the apparent breach, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas ordered 13,000 security forces to deploy near the border to enforce the cease-fire, sources in Abbas' office told CNN.

This comes as the Israeli government agreed to withdraw troops from Gaza and cease military operations, said Miri Eisin, a government spokeswoman.

"We think that there's the possibility of hope here," she said. "What we hope is that the violence itself will stop, and we'll be able to see a little bit of peace and quiet in and around the Gaza Strip." (Watch Eisin discuss cease-fire)

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert ordered the army to show restraint, according to The Associated Press.

"Even though there are still violations of the cease-fire by the Palestinian side, I have instructed our defense officials not to respond, to show restraint, and to give this cease-fire a chance to take full effect," Olmert said during a ceremony at a high school in southern Israel, according to AP.

Hamas government spokesman Ghazi Hamad on Sunday insisted that all Palestinian factions are "100 percent" behind the cease-fire.

"All of them now, without exception, including Hamas and Islamic Jihad and Fatah and other factions, they decided to respect the agreement and also to be committed 100 percent to this agreement," Hamad told CNN.

Hamad denied reports that Palestinian militants fired several rockets into Israel after the cease-fire took effect.

That is in contrast to a leaflet that Hamas' militant wing issued earlier in the day, claiming it fired four rockets on Israel after 6 a.m. (Watch Israelis survey rocket damage )

The Islamic Jihad militant group also claimed responsibility for firing three rockets right after 6 a.m., and another two rockets at 9:30 a.m. in response to Israeli raids on West Bank towns.

According to the Israel Defense Forces, militants have fired at least 11 rockets from Gaza since the 6 a.m. cease-fire, with only two landing inside Israel. Both landed in open fields and did not cause any casualties or damage.

Militants also fired several rockets just before the cease-fire took effect, according to IDF. No one was injured, but a building was damaged.

The firing of rockets into Israel have recently prompted Israeli airstrikes in Gaza, including three this weekend that killed at least three militants.

Israel Defense Minister Amir Peretz convened a scheduled security meeting to discuss the cease-fire violation earlier in the day. During the meeting Peretz learned of the rocket launches out of Gaza and said every attempt to fire rockets on Israel will be considered a violation of the cease-fire and will be dealt with in "a severe manner," a ministry statement said.

Meanwhile, Abbas has organized a meeting of Palestinian factions to discuss extending the cease-fire to the West Bank, according to Olmert.

The current agreement only covers Gaza.

The meeting will be part of the beginning of "a serious, real, honest and direct negotiation between myself and [Abbas] so we could make a progress towards a full settlement between Israel and the Palestinians," Olmert said.

CNN's Avivit Dalgoshen contributed to this report.

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11/26/2006 10:27 AM
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