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Israel closes Gaza crossings

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Israel says it will not open its border crossings with the Gaza Strip after several rockets were fired into southern Israel.

Restrictions at the Karni, Nahal Oz, Erez and Sufa crossings, which handle traffic between Israel and the territory, were eased following a ceasefire agreed with the Hamas movement.

The crossings were to have opened at 8am (05:00 GMT) on Wednesday but Peter Lerner, an Israeli military liaison official, said that they would stay closed until further notice.

“We are keeping the Karni, Sufa and Nahal Oz crossings closed for the time being following the firing of rockets in flagrant violation of the truce deal,” he told the AFP news agency.

Al-Quds, the military wing of the Islamic Jihad movement, took responsibility for the three rockets fired on Tuesday which caused some damage and slight injuries to two people in the Israeli town of Sderot.

They said that the attacks were a response to an Israel in the West Bank town of Nablus earlier in the day in which two Palestinian were killed.

The West Bank is not included in the Egyptian-brokered truce which has been in place for six days.

Al Jazeera’s Ayman Mohyeldin, reporting from the Gaza Strip, said that it was too early to say that the truce was over.

“Many Palestinians were originally concerned … that the retaliation would be in the form of a military strike, or some kind of military operation in Gaza which would definitely have escalated the situation,” he said.

“It is premature to say that the ceasefire has been annulled, there has been no official comment on either side that the truce has been called off.

“There is still a desire from the Palestinian factions that a truce is in their best interests … from a humanitarian point of view, allowing the crossings to remain open and for good and basic necessities to come in.” * Source: Al-Jazeera