Terrorists Reject Ceasefire; Olmert Honors It Despite Attacks

One of the 3 terrorist groups which kidnapped IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit in June refuses to recognize a “ceasefire” agreement between the PA and Israel, joining two others that have already backed out.

Hana Levi Julian , | updated: 8:53 AM

The Army of Islam, a small but active terror organization, released a statement Sunday night which made it clear that not all terror groups had agreed to the ceasefire, contrary to statements made by the PA leadership Saturday night.

“The Army of Islam does not recognize the truce,” said the statement, according to the AFP news agency. “We warn whoever prevents us from fighting the Jews.”

A ceasefire agreement allegedly coordinated Saturday between all terrorist organizations in the Palestinian Authority territories went into effect on Sunday morning at 6:00 a.m.

Within hours, the Islamic Jihad and Fatah-linked Abu Rish Brigades groups both said they would continue firing rockets against Israel’s southern communities.

Three Kassam rockets slammed into the city of Sderot and surrounds within two hours after the ceasefire allegedly went into effect. Another rocket landed in the Eshkol region of the Negev.

A fifth rocket landed at mid-morning, also hitting Sderot. No one was hurt in the attack and no damage was reported.

The besieged residents demonstrated in the streets in response to the broken hope of a peaceful day. Protestors burned tires in the street, shouting angrily against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and the government.

Olmert said later in the day that the IDF would not respond to the attacks at that point. In a statement released to the media Sunday afternoon, the Prime Minister said the ceasefire was only a “first step” in a comprehensive diplomatic process.

He added that he was aware there would be ceasefire violations and said Israelis must have “patience” with the process of renewing diplomatic talks with the terrorists.

For its part, Hamas-led PA officials announced that some 13,000 PA troops have been deployed in northern Gaza along the border with Israel as a deterrent force to prevent Kassam rockets being fired at Israel from the area of Beit Hanoun, a favorite terrorist launching site.

The PA forces are spread out along the entire northern Gaza border, said officials, in an effort to ensure that the rocket attacks are halted completely.

Damascus-based Hamas politburo Chief Khaled Meshaal, widely believed to be the unspoken leader of Hamas, gave a six-month deadline for establishment of an official PA state, as part of the ceasefire deal. Meshaal has been largely responsible for the repeatedly scuttled prisoner swap deals to free Shalit.