Ramallah - The Palestinians have reached agreement with Israel on a “permanent” truce for Gaza, a senior official told AFP on Tuesday, in a move Hamas hailed as a “victory.” This was reportedly later confirmed by Egyptian officials.
There was no immediate comment from Israel on the claimed deal to end seven weeks of deadly conflict in and around the territory.
The Palestinian official gave no time for when a ceasefire would take effect but said president Mahmud Abbas would give further details in a speech from his West Bank headquarters at 1600 GMT.
“The contacts that have been going on have led to a permanent ceasefire, a (deal to) end the blockade and a guarantee that Gaza's demands and needs will be met,” the official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The Islamist Hamas movement, de facto ruler of Gaza and party to the Abbas-led efforts to agree a truce, also said a deal had been struck with Israel.
“The negotiations ended with an agreement which embodies the resistance of our people and a victory for the resistance,” its exiled deputy leader Mussa Abu Marzuk wrote on his Facebook page.
The Palestinian official told AFP the truce deal had been finalised after 48 hours of intensive shuttle diplomacy by Azzam al-Ahmed, head of the Palestinian delegation to the protracted, on-off truce talks.
“Over the past 48 hours, he has been shuttling between the leadership of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, all the factions, and Egyptian leaders, travelling between Ramallah, Gaza, Doha overseas,” he said.
In Gaza, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said Egypt was expected to make an official announcement od the deal.