Photo by Christopher Furlong, Getty Images.
CLEVELAND -- Northeast Ohioans remain concerned about what happens next between Israel and Palestine, despite the cease fire declared Wednesday.
The agreement reached ended eight days of fighting between Israeli forces and Palestinian militants in Gaza.
The militant rocket attacks and Israeli airstrikes officially stopped at 9 p.m. local time. But authorities say a dozen rockets hit southern Israel until an hour after the cease-fire deadline.
In all, 161 Palestinians, including dozens of civilians, were killed as Israeli forces carried out more than 1,500 strikes on Gaza. Five Israelis died as militants pounded Israel with more than 1,000 rockets.
The truce was brokered by Egypt's new Islamist government after two days of intense shuttle diplomacy by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and others. Under the agreement, Egypt will play a key role in maintaining the peace.
In Northeast Ohio, the cease-fire did not deter a rally at Public Square in downtown Cleveland.
Members and supporters of Al-Awda Cleveland (Palestine's Right to Return Coalition) gathered to raise awareness of remaining concerns.
"Just because there's a cease-fire, doesn't mean the siege has ended," said Abbas Hamideh, who has family and friends in Palestine.
In Beachwood at the office of Cleveland Jewish News, Editor Bob Jacob is in close contact with Clevelanders who live in Israel, including correspondent Cliff Savren, who reports from Tel Aviv.
"The real skepticism between a lot of people in Israel is that this isn't going to last long. That in the next few years, Israel will have to go through the same thing again," said Cliff Savren, by phone from Israel.