Hamas Accepts Cease Fire–Israel Must Stand Down!

A senior Egyptian official told the media that Hamas had accepted the Cairo Initiative and will cease firing. “We have obtained Hamas’s agreement and are awaiting the response from Israel.” An Israeli official is expected in Egypt today and hopefully it will bring an end to death and destruction. Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said “Hamas is going to publicly express its support and acceptance(to the Cairo Initiative). The ball is now in the court of Israel to cease firing and come to the negotiating table of peace.

Israel must stand down even if at this moment each point is not clearly spelled out. It would assist the process if a Turkish armed force could be sent to assume control over Gaza crossings and ensure that rocket attacks cease as well as Israel attacks on Hamas leaders. The Turkish force would continue supervising the area on condition there are no more rocket attacks or assassinations of Hamas leadership. They would be responsible to ensure no more tunnels are built since the crossings would allow enough food and materials to enter and Israel would cease to supervise the process.

A next step would be for Israel to meet with the Arab League to discuss its proposal of peace and recognition in exchange for a return to the 1967 borders. It is time for religious fanatics on both sides to be pushed aside in the name of peace.