Israeli troops withdraw from Gaza

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London, Aug 5: The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) Tuesday announced the withdrawal of all of its troops to "defensive positions" outside the Gaza Strip.

An IDF officer said that Israeli forces left Gaza before the start of a 72-hour truce, scheduled for 8.00 a.m, BBC reported.

The Israeli army had claimed the main aim of the conflict - to destroy militants' tunnels - has been achieved.

Israel's Operation Protective Edge has reportedly killed 1,800 Palestinians

Gaza officials say Israel's Operation Protective Edge which started July 8, has killed 1,800 Palestinians.

Some 67 Israelis have also died.

"The IDF will be redeployed in defensive positions outside the Gaza Strip and we will maintain those defensive positions," the officer said.

72-hour humanitarian truce begins in Gaza

A 72-hour humanitarian truce brokered by Egypt between Israel and Palestine went into effect on Tuesday in the Gaza Strip.

The start of the truce at 8.00 a.m was preceded by a barrage of rockets from Gaza, with air raids sirens howling throughout southern Israel, including in the cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon and Beersheba, as well as Jerusalem, Al Jazeera reported.

In the minutes before the truce, Israel launched air strikes on Gaza City and on southern and central parts of the Palestinian territory in response to the rockets.

Just before the truce came into effect, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) announced the withdrawal of all of its troops to "defensive positions" outside the Gaza Strip.

An IDF officer said that Israeli forces left Gaza before the start of the truce.

IANS

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