Israel Mum on Gaza Ceasefire Decision After Cabinet Meeting

Israel begins work on Gaza sea barrier

Egypt bears as much responsibility for the Gaza Strip as Israel does, an Israeli cabinet minister said on Monday, in remarks that could upset Cairo as it tries to avoid being drawn back into the Palestinian enclave while brokering truce talks there.

These specifics were not officially confirmed.

They are in custody and will be put on flights home, a spokeswoman for the Israeli Immigration Authority said. He said the deal stipulated that the negotiations for their return must begin immediately.

Israel has not publicly responded to the report, although speculation has grown in Israel after an announcement last week that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would cancel his upcoming trip to Colombia for the inauguration of the new president there.

Hamas, meanwhile, is desperate to end the blockade, which has made it increasingly hard for the group to govern and has led to growing hardships in Gaza.

Egypt has allowed domestic gas deliveries into the blockaded Gaza Strip for the first time, according to a Palestinian official on Sunday.

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Meanwhile, a Palestinian teen died of his wounds Saturday a day after he was shot by Israeli troops during clashes on the Gaza border, the territory's Hamas-run health ministry said. The people on board were taken for "further inquiry".

Hamas has said such an Egypt-brokered deal must include a significant easing of an 11-year-old border blockade of Gaza and a United Nations -led Gaza reconstruction plan.

Israeli officials have repeatedly cautioned there will be no deal unless Hamas returns the bodies of two soldiers thought to be in Hamas hands since the soldiers were killed during Operation Protective Edge four years ago.

About 158 Palestinians have been killed and more than 17,000 others injured by Israeli gunfire during the rallies which peak every Friday.

Incendiary balloons and flaming kites launched by Gazans have wreaked havoc in the Israeli communities surrounding Gaza since April, sparking fires that have scorched thousands of acres of farmlands and countryside.

The Israel Defense Forces confirmed in a statement that an aircraft fired at the group in the northern Gaza Strip.

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