Security and the Gaza conflct have been the overriding themes of the Israeli election, which takes place against the backdrop of a fragile truce.
As rebuilding continues, there are reports of progress in Egyptian-led efforts to secure a lasting ceasefire. It is thought the sides are coming closer to a deal on a prisoner exchange. A Hamas spokesman said if the group’s expectations were met and the blockade of Gaza lifted, then they could have an accord on a conclusive truce. People in Gaza appear to be of the view that the outcome of the election will make little difference to their lives. With parts of Gaza still in ruins there is little appetite for a resumption of violence. One man in a Gaza street said: “We want an agreement because a ceasefire’s in our interest. It’ll allow us to rebuild and prepare for other things. We can be more prepared.” Israeli forces remain deployed along the border with Gaza and are poised to strike again if the current truce collapses. It has been severely strained by further rocket attacks on southern Israeli towns. The latest caused damage to property but no one was injured.