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Clashes erupt in northern Gaza; Brigades reported to fire on Israeli troops stationed near Jabaliya

Jan. 18, 2009 9:45 A.M. (Updated: Jan. 18, 2009 9:45 A.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an - Palestinian factions clashed with Israeli troops still stationed in Gaza Sunday morning, after Israel called a "unilateral ceasefire" to start at 2am the same day.

Even before the ceasefire was called, Gaza factions made it clear that a stop to the violence without the total withdrawal of Israeli troops and the opening of Gaza borders would be unacceptable, and fighting would continue.

Israeli troops have remained stationed around Gaza City, though they have pulled back from residential areas. They are stationed in the southern Strip between Rafah and Khan Younis, and continue to divide the Strip by forming a physical and military road block between the northern and central sectors at the former Israeli settlement of Netsarim.

Militants clashed with troops in the northern Strip near Jabaliya, and others fired several projectiles and Grads into Israel.

According to Israeli sources at least seven Grads were fired, and another six projectiles launched towards the western Negev.

***Updated 10:26 Bethlehem time
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