Brief Rocket Fire Disrupts Gaza Cease-Fire. How Long Can the Truce Last?

A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian fighters in the Gaza Strip was largely upheld on Sunday, aside from a brief exchange of fire in the evening, and routine returned hours after the two sides agreed to end a five-day escalation that killed at least 33 people in Gaza and two in Israel.

But across the region, the question was when, rather than if, the cease-fire would break. The escalation, at least the 11th involving Gaza since 2006, came just nine months after the previous days-long battle between Israel and militias in the coastal enclave.

The Israeli military said that a single Palestinian rocket was fired into an open area near Gaza on Sunday evening, causing no damage but reminding residents of the fragility of the truce.

The regional dynamics also remain unstable: Israel’s 16-year blockade of Gaza, conducted jointly with Egypt, remains in place, as does its 56-year occupation of the West Bank, both of which fuel Palestinian anger and violence. Hard-line Palestinian militias that officially call for Israel’s destruction still dominate Gaza and maintain a strong presence in the West Bank — bolstering the Israeli rationale for exerting control over both territories.

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