'Ceasefire reached' between Israel and Gaza militants

Uthman Rami Hals who was killed by Israeli forces during a protest in the Gaza Strip

Uthman Rami Hals who was killed by Israeli forces during a protest in the Gaza Strip

A Palestinian official, who spoke to the Reuters news agency on condition of anonymity, said Egypt and other global players were in contact with Israel and Gaza trying to restore calm.

"Egyptian and global efforts succeeded in ending the current round of escalation", a Palestinian official told Reuters.

Earlier in the night, two mortar shells fired from Gaza landed in Israel.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: "We will expand the scope of our reaction to Hamas' terror attacks as much as needed".

More than 130 Palestinians have been killed during the Israel-Gaza frontier protests which have entered their fourth month and have drawn a lethal Israeli army response.

Last Friday, one person was killed and 57 were wounded by Israeli military fire in protests at the Gaza-Israel border.

The army earlier on Saturday said it targeted two Hamas attack tunnels as well as other military compounds in the Strip, including those involved in the spate of incendiary kite and balloon attacks.

Health officials in Gaza said the building was empty, but two Palestinians aged 15 and 16, among a crowd in a nearby public park, were killed.

It was the largest daytime attack by Israel on the coastal enclave controlled by the Hamas Islamist group since the 2014 Israel-Gaza war, an army spokesman said.

The operation is one of Israel's broadest since the 2014 war with Hamas.

Hamas said it fired the rockets to deter Israel from further action.

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Such rocket attacks have become a regular feature of the asymmetric conflict between Hamas and Israel, driving the IDF to develop the Iron Dome defence system to intercept and destroy incoming rockets.

Hamas said another Palestinian had died after being shot by Israeli troops during border protests on Friday.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, at least two Palestinian teens lost their lives in the Israeli airstrikes and 14 other people sustained injuries. "We have no intention to harm anyone who is not a terrorist", he said.

Israeli media reported that more than 140 rocket alarm sirens also sounded throughout communities near the Israel-Gaza border from midnight into the morning.

The spokesman for the terrorist group, Fawzi Barhoum, also said the projectiles were an "immediate response" that was meant to "deliver the message" to Israel.

The Egyptians have also contacted Islamic JIhad officials in the past 24 hours in a bid to prevent a further deterioration in the Gaza Strip.

"The IDF has struck Hamas with the hardest blow since Operation Protective Edge and we will increase the strength of our attacks as necessary", Netanyahu said.

On July 9, Israel closed its only goods crossing with the Gaza Strip in response to the fires.

"The protection and the defense of our people is a national duty and a strategic choice", he added.

Radwan, a senior Hamas official in the Gaza Strip, said that his movement was not scared of Israel's threats and would not stop the "March of Return" protests to end the blockade.

Since the protests and clashes broke out along the border on March 30, at least 141 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire.

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