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Mideast ceasefire begins

7:32am BST - 00:37

A 12-hour truce is underway after Israel and Palestinian militant groups in Gaza agreed to U.N appeals for a pause in the fighting. Rough cut (no reporter narration.

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ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION A 12-hour humanitarian truce went into effect on Saturday after Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip agreed to a U.N. request for a pause in fighting, and efforts to secure a long-term cease-fire moved ahead. Israel's military said it would hold fire starting at 8 a.m. (0500 GMT) but would pursue its search for tunnels used by militants. A spokesman for the Islamist group Hamas, which is dominant in the Gaza Strip, said all Palestinian factions would abide by the brief truce. Fighting had continued overnight as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, on a visit to the region, spearheaded international efforts to end 19 days of conflict. Gaza officials said five people were killed in Israeli air strikes, bringing the Palestinian death toll to 865, most of them civilians. Earlier, militants fired a barrage of rockets out of Gaza, triggering sirens across much of southern and central Israel. No injuries were reported, with the Iron Dome interceptor system knocking out many of the missiles. Israel said that two more of its soldiers were killed in Gaza, bringing the army death toll to 37, as troops battled militants in the north, east and south of Gaza

Mideast ceasefire begins

7:32am BST - 00:37

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