Israel accepts truce 'principles'
Israel has agreed "on the principles" of a ceasefire proposal, raising hopes of an end to its conflict with Palestinian militants in Gaza, BBC reported.
"The challenge now is to get the details to match the principles," Israeli spokesman Mark Regev said.
The Palestinian militant group Hamas said there were "positive signs but no agreement yet".
The development came as Israel halted military operations in Gaza for three hours to aid humanitarian efforts.
The lull, which began about 1100 GMT and ended shortly after 1400 GMT, was the first of what an Israeli spokesman said would be a daily ceasefire to allow Gazans to "get medical attention, get supplies... whatever they need".
News agencies reported that Gaza residents had rushed out into the streets during the lull to stock up on food and visit relatives in hospital.
Israel and Hamas have been under pressure to accept a diplomatic solution to the conflict, which began on 27 December.
Little official detail has been given about the French-Egyptian proposal, which is backed by the US and UN, but diplomats say it centres around measures to halt weapons smuggling from Egypt into Gaza, coupled with moves to ease the blockade.
In a statement released on Wednesday, France's President Nicolas Sarkozy welcomed "the acceptance by Israel and the Palestinian Authority" of the truce plan. The statement did not mention Hamas.