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Israel Continues Lebanese Assault, Rejects Three-Day Cease-Fire


Israel has rejected U.N. calls for a 72-hour truce in the conflict with Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.

A top U.N. official, Undersecretary for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland, proposed the truce to allow women, children and the elderly to escape the fighting and let emergency aid into Lebanon.

Israel says it has already opened humanitarian corridors across Lebanon. Israeli officials say Hezbollah guerrillas are blocking the shipments to create a humanitarian crisis.

Meanwhile, a U.S. boat arrived in Beirut Saturday with supplies for hundreds of thousands. And the U.N. refugee agency is sending its first convoys of trucks into Lebanon from Syria.

As aid made its way into Lebanon, Israeli warplanes continued to pound Hezbollah positions. Lebanese officials say one strike killed a woman and at least five children.

The Israeli army says it has pulled back from the Lebanese town of Bint Jbeil, where Israel lost nine soldiers this week.

Also Saturday, Hezbollah fired more rockets into northern Israel, wounding at least five people.

Hezbollah announced Friday the use of a new longer range rocket the group calls the Khaibar-1. Several rockets struck near the town of Afula Friday, about 50 kilometers inside Israel, causing no injuries.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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