Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says Tel Aviv will observe a 'unilateral ceasefire' after pounding Gaza non-stop for 22 consecutive days.
Olmert made the announcement in a press conference held in Tel Aviv, adding that Israel "has achieved the objectives set by the cabinet."
The premier said the decision was made after talks with Egypt's president Hosni Mubarak and in light of an agreement between Tel Aviv and Washington which was reached on Friday.
However, the ceasefire, which comes into effect at 2:00 a.m. local time (0000 GMT), does not include Hamas and negotiations with the resistance movement nor does it mean a complete withdrawal of Israeli forces from the Gaza Strip.
Israel launched Operation Cast Lead on December 27 in form of seaborne and airborne attacks and later expanded the onslaught into a full-fledged ground incursion on Januar
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