In the first week of November, Hamas and Israel began to implement the ceasefire agreement, which they have been negotiating indirectly since the beginning of the summer under the aegis of Egypt and the United Nations. The agreement must progress in three stages. The first concerns the general improvement of the dynamic between Israel and Hamas, which has not changed the potential to lead both sides to an involuntary escalation. Once relatively calm, the parties should move on to the next steps, including efforts to stabilize the Gaza Strip in a sustainable manner, rebuild and reconcile hamas and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), leading to the reunification of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank under the Palestinian Authority (PA), which governs Palestinian-led territories in the West Bank. We recognize that, until last week, as part of the 19 June ceasefire, Hamas made efforts to stop rocket fire from other groups. However, other armed groups continued to fire temporary rockets from Gaza throughout the ceasefire. As a government authority in the Gaza Strip, it is your responsibility under international law to prevent such attacks and to arrest and prosecute those who commit them. We also ask you to take all necessary measures to contain these illegal attacks, whether the current ceasefire remains in force or extended beyond 19 December. The security forces, which are under your control in Gaza, have also shown that they are capable of containing rocket fire.
At least twice, Hamas security forces arrested people accused of firing rockets. On 10 July, at least three members of the Aqsa Martyrs Brigades were arrested for firing rockets. However, all were subsequently released and no charges were laid against them.  The rocket launch was the first attack since the agreement reached in late August between Israel and terrorist groups in the Gaza Strip and the largest blockade since February. Prior to the 4 November incident, in which Israeli forces destroyed a cross-border tunnel and killed six of their militants, Hamas had scrupulously respected the ceasefire and had not itself fired rockets and ruled other Palestinian groups.  Hamas` compliance with the ceasefire was recognized by Israel`s official spokesman, Mark Regev.  In an interview with David Fuller on More4 News (a sister program of the U.K. Channel 4 News) on January 9, 2009, two weeks after Israel`s attack on Gaza, Regev said, „Success frees the civilian population of southern Israel from fear of the arrival of Hamas rockets.“  When Fuller Regev stated that there were no Hamas rockets during the ceasefire before November 4, there were no Hamas rockets for four months,“ Regev replied: „It`s true.“  Regev`s opinion is contained in a document made available to journalists and published by the Israeli news centre Meir Amit: „Hamas has been cautious in maintaining the ceasefire.“  Despite Israel`s refusal to abide by the ceasefire agreement to end the siege, Hamas virtually stopped rocket and mortar fire from Gaza in the summer and fall of 2008. Hamas „attempted to impose the terms of the agreement“ on other Palestinian groups by „taking a series of measures against networks that violated the agreement“, including the short-term possession and seizure of their weapons, but was unable to completely stop the rocket and mortar shell fire of these rogue groups in Gaza.