Sat Nov 25, 2006 5:18pm ET
http://today.reuters.com/news/articlenews.aspx?type=worldNews&storyid=2006-11-25T222226Z_01_L23458912_RTRUKOC_0_US-MIDEAST.xml[-] Text [+]By Nidal al-MughrabiGAZA (Reuters) - Palestinian militants will cease rocket attacks on Israelfrom the Gaza Strip on Sunday, President Mahmoud Abbas told Israeli PrimeMinister Ehud Olmert in a telephone call on Saturday, an Abbas aide said.Israel welcomed the move and promised to end its military operations in theGaza Strip if the Palestinian violence stopped."President Abbas and Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh agreed with all factionsand resistance groups on calm, including the stopping of rocket fire, startingfrom 6 a.m. (0400 MT) on Sunday," Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rdainah said.He said Olmert, informed of the development by Abbas "agreed that Israel willstop operations and begin the withdrawal from Gaza at the same time".In Jerusalem, an Olmert spokeswoman said "Abbas told the prime minister thatall the Palestinian factions are committe
d to the agreement."Abbas asked in response that Israel stop all military operations in the GazaStrip and withdraw all the forces," she said. "The prime minister ... toldAbbas that Israel would respond favorably as Israel was operating in the GazaStrip in response to the violence. With the end of violence, Israel would behappy to withdraw its troops."Palestinian militants have been firing rockets into southern Israel daily inwhat they term a response to Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip.Israel withdrew troops and settlers from the territory last year but resumedground operations in June after militants from Gaza tunneled across the borderand seized an Israeli soldier, who is still being held.Several militant groups met earlier in the day with Haniyeh, a leader of thegoverning Hamas group, and agreed to halt attacks from Gaza if Israel ceasedits military activities there.© Reuters 2006. All Rights Reserved.
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