Gaza Cease-Fire Appears to Hold, Halting Rocket Attacks
SDEROT, Israel, Nov. 25 - A cease-fire in Gaza between Israelis and Palestinians appeared to be holding today after most Palestinian factions stopped firing rockets at Israel in exchange for an Israeli withdrawal of its troops from the territory.
The cease-fire, which went into effect at 6 a.m. local time, got off to a shaky start when Palestinian militants belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad launched nine rockets into southern Israel.
One rocket crashed through the roof of a house here in the Israeli border town of Sderot, but caused no injuries. The other rockets landed in open areas. But by 10:15 a.m., the rocket fire stopped.
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel, who has been under intense pressure domestically to launch an even bigger military operation in Gaza to stop the rocket attacks, spoke of restraint.
"The state of Israel is a very strong country," Mr. Olmert said. "It is strong enough to fight terror and it is strong enough to show restraint in order to give an opportunity for the cease-fire to come into full comprehensive and practical effect."