Hamas Confirms Cease-Fire With Israel

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Leaders of Hamas are confirming reports of a long-awaited cease-fire with Israel.

The announcement came first from Egypt’s state-owned news agency, which calls the peace agreement “the first phase” of a Egyptian-brokered package aimed at ending the violence in the Gaza Strip.

The truce is scheduled to begin at 6 a.m. Thursday. A spokesman for the radical Palestinian group says Hamas is committing itself to Egypt’s timeline.

Israel hasn’t confirmed the deal, saying only that a “new reality” would take hold if Palestinian attacks end. Israel has been seeking a halt to the near-daily rocket attacks launched from Gaza, an end to the Hamas weapons buildup, and the release of an Israeli soldier held by Hamas for two years.