Middle East

Israel reopens fishing zone off Gaza’s coast after truce

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel says it’s reopening the permitted fishing zone off the Gaza coast following a cease-fire deal with the territory’s militant Hamas rulers, which ended the worst spate of fighting between the enemies since a 2014 war.

COGAT, the Israeli defense body responsible for Palestinian civilian affairs, said Israel would expand the Palestinian fishing zone to a maximum of 12 nautical miles on Friday to “prevent the deterioration in humanitarian conditions” in the blockaded Gaza Strip.

A truce, mediated by Egypt, Qatar and the U.N., restored quiet to the volatile border after a weekend escalation killed 25 Palestinians and four Israelis.

The cease-fire deal is believed to include economic aid measures to help ease the crippling Israeli-Egyptian blockade of the territory, imposed after Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007.

Photo: An elderly Palestinian man walks next to the rubble of multi-story building was hit and destroyed on Sunday by Israeli airstrikes, in Gaza City, Monday, May. 6, 2019. The Israeli military has lifted protective restrictions on residents in southern Israel while Gaza’s ruling Hamas militant group reported a cease-fire deal had been reached to end the deadliest fighting between the two sides since a 2014 war. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

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