Israel says troops will leave Gaza by 8 am cease-fire

Photo: Israel says troops will leave Gaza by 8 am cease-fire
 / Arab-Israel Relations

The Israeli military says all its ground troops will have pulled out of the Gaza Strip by the start of the cease-fire agreed to by both sides in the war, AP reported.

Lt. Col. Peter Lerner says the withdrawal will be completed by 8 a.m. (0500 GMT) Tuesday.

Lerner says the withdrawal is going forward after Israel completed the destruction of 32 cross-border tunnels meant to allow Islamic militants to carry out attacks against Israel.

The cease-fire is meant to end nearly four weeks of fighting between Israel and Hamas, which has claimed 1,900 Palestinian lives - most of them civilians. The war has also left 67 Israelis dead, all but three of them soldiers.

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