Hamas announced it would begin observing a unilateral cease-fire in the Gaza Strip starting at 8 p.m. Wednesday, after a day of heavy fighting that left at least 16 people dead. The call was echoed by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, who also called on all warring factions to cease their fire. "We will abide by an immediate unilateral cease-fire starting at 8 pm (local time)," said Khalil al-Haya, a Hamas representative in Gaza. "We announce that we are ready to immediately sit with our brothers ... to stop the deterioration." His statement was carried on Hamas radio and TV in Gaza.