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... officially began at 8:00am (5:00 GMT).

Hopefully it will go well.

Israel and Hamas have said they have accepted a 12-hour humanitarian window in Gaza.

The truce is due to begin at 0800 local time (0500 GMT). Efforts to negotiate a seven-day ceasefire are still ongoing.

...

A spokesman for Hamas, the Islamist group that controls Gaza, Sami Abu Zuhri said there was "national consensus on a humanitarian truce... for 12 hours on Saturday".

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) later confirmed the truce on Twitter, but said it would "continue to locate and neutralise terror tunnels".

http://www.bbc.com/...

IDF
‏@IDFSpokesperson·

From 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM, there will be a humanitarian window in Gaza. During this time, we'll continue to locate & neutralize terror tunnels

https://twitter.com/...

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had notified U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that his country would begin a humanitarian truce in the Gaza Strip on Saturday, an Israeli official said late on Friday.

The official added that the truce would last for 12 hours and that it would start at 5:00 GMT.

The Gaza-based Palestinian resistance movement Hamas early on Saturday also approved the United Nations-proposed humanitarian calm for 12 hours in the Gaza Strip.

"Gaza factions have approved a humanitarian calm for 12 hours on Saturday," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri told Anadolu Agency.

http://www.aa.com.tr/...

9:05am Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents in the first hour so the ceasefire seems to be holding.

But Haaretz claims that IDF actions against Hamas tunnels are continuing - which is probably just bluster.

10:05am Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents in the first two hours so the ceasefire seems to be holding.

The IDF has sent SMS messages to Palestinians in Gaza telling them not to return to their homes until notified by the IDF.

The death toll in Gaza is now past 900. As of last night it was 884 - including 208  children, 101 women, and 51 elderly.

From Haaretz:

9:30 A.M. The humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza is allowing Palestinian emergency rescue crews to access buildings that were bombed by Israeli forces over the past week.

The latest strike took place early on Saturday, when a fighter jet targeted a four-story building in Khan Yunis. So far 19 deaths have been reported in the attack, including 11 children, According to the Sama news agency. Those killed were members of one family who fled the village of Khouza'a, east of Khan Yunis. Some 10,000 residents of the village and neighboring towns evacuated their homes due to Israeli strikes and are seeking shelter in Khan Yunis.

Five other Palestinians were killed in separate incidents across the Gaza Strip in the hours that preceded the cease-fire. Two men, ages 39 and 52, were killed in the center of the Strip. Another 32-year-old man was shot to death while trying to pull out bodies from homes destroyed in eastern Khan Younis. Two others, ages 19 and 16, were killed in the Sheikh Radwan refugee camp.

Earlier, a strike on a home in Gaza City killed Hussam Yassin, 15, the grandson of Hamas founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. (Amira Hass)

http://www.haaretz.com/...

11:05am Update: In the first two hours of the ceasefire more than 20 bodies were recovered from the rubble of buildings which had been unreachable. Widespread efforts to recover bodies and locate the wounded continue.

Aljazeera is now reporting 35 bodies recovered in the first three hours of the ceasefire.

The ceasefire seems to be holding as the third hour ends, but there have been a few reports of IDF shellfire.

This is one of them:

Ian Pannell
‏@BBCiPannell

Tank shell just fired near Sherjaya district of #Gaza as #IDF drones hover overhead during 12 hour ceasefire

https://twitter.com/...

https://twitter.com/...

But the IDF has congratulated itself:
IDF
‏@IDFSpokesperson

So far, we have held our fire for 2 hours today in order to allow a humanitarian window in Gaza.

https://twitter.com/...

Many of the responses to the IDF tweet are interesting, for example:
Oh my God! (Sorry: "Oh my G-d!") You've gone two hours without killing a kid? You must be going nuts!

...

we should thank you for that?!

...

we've held fire for 2 hours today to allow a humanitarian window in Gaza”

Kind & gracious. The dead kids appreciate it

12:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the fourth hour of the ceasefire.

1:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the fifth hour of the ceasefire.

At least 76 bodies have been recovered from the rubble in Gaza so far today, putting the death toll at near 1,000 - including well over 200 children and about 200 women and the elderly.

The U.S. Secretary of State, the EU foreign policy chief, and the Foreign Ministers of Qatar, Turkey, France, Britain, Germany and Italy have begun their meeting in Paris.

The US and EU have had to take the lead because, as I understand it, Hamas' main condition is that the terms of the ceasefire be guaranteed by the UN, the US, and the EU, with some Arab League involvement.

The US though, as I understand it, wants to limit involvement to the three international organizations - the UN, the EU, and the Arab League.

Egypt has been sidelined in the negotiations recently because they have never carried out the roll defined for them in previous ceasefires.

2:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the sixth hour of the ceasefire.

Efforts to recover the dead and find the wounded continue in Gaza.

3:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the seventh hour of the ceasefire.

The number of bodies recovered from the rubble in Gaza so far today is approaching 100, putting the death toll at over 1,000.

How many children, women, and the elderly are included in those bodies recovered so far today is unclear but as of early this morning the dead included 208 children, 101 women, and 51 elderly.

As to why there is so much death and destruction in Gaza, Haaretz reports:

14:30

... The IAF also dropped 100 bombs overnight, each containing a ton of explosives. ...

http://www.haaretz.com/...

At least 100 tons of explosives were dropped on Gaza last night alone.

4:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the eighth hour of the ceasefire.

The US, European, Turkish, and Qatar officials meeting in Paris have called for the 12-hour ceasefire to be extended.

PARIS (AP) — Foreign Ministers from seven nations are calling for an extension of the 12-hour humanitarian cease-fire in the Gaza Strip.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius (loh-RAHN' FAH'-bee-yus) on Saturday also urged world leaders to negotiate a long-term truce that addresses Israel's concerns about security while also trying to accommodate Palestinian demands to open borders to more people living in Gaza and spurring economic development there.

Fabius spoke on behalf of diplomats from Britain, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Qatar, and the United States who gathered for a day of talks in Paris.

http://www.chron.com/...

PARIS (Reuters) - Foreign ministers from seven nations on Saturday called for an extension of the 12-hour ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said.

 "All of us call on the parties to extend the military ceasefire that is currently underway," Fabius told reporters after a gathering that included the foreign ministers of Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Qatar, Turkey and the United States.

An EU official also attended the meeting at the French foreign ministry.

http://news.yahoo.com/...

5:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the ninth hour of the ceasefire.

Turkish daily Hurriyet has published 102 photographs of the destruction in Gaza:

http://fotoanaliz.hurriyet.com.tr/...

6:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the tenth hour of the ceasefire.

The death toll in Gaza is now officially past 1,000, with more than 100 bodies recovered from the rubble in Gaza so far today.

The IDF has announced that the Israeli military death toll is now 40, with five soldiers killed in Gaza yesterday evening and last night. Three civilias have been killed in Israel.

There are now two hours remaining in the 12-hour ceasefire and evening is slowly approaching.

7:05pm Update: I have seen no reports of any incidents during the eleventh hour of the ceasefire.

The number of bodies retrieved from the rubble in Gaza today continues to climb, to well over 100.

UN envoy Robert Serry is reportedly trying to arrange an extension of the ceasefire which is due to end in one hour.

Separately, the office of the top United Nations envoy in the region, Robert Serry, said he is urging Israel and Hamas to extend the truce by 24 hours.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

There are reports that Hamas considering an extension of the ceasefire.

There are also reports that the Israeli cabinet is considering/has approved a 4-hour extension of the ceasefire.

Until official announcements are made this is just rumor or propaganda.

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