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Israel Bombs Gaza Targets


Israel aircraft have bombed a Palestinian target in Gaza, following Palestinian militant rocket attacks on Israel on Sunday. The Hamas militant group that runs Gaza says Israeli aircraft hit a Palestinian police position. On Sunday, Palestinian militants fired at least seven rockets and mortar shells into Israel, drawing an Israeli threat of a "disproportionate" response.

Israeli police say the projectiles wounded two people in southern Israel. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert warned that Israel will retaliate severely for cross-border attacks that he says deprive Israelis of a normal life.

Palestinian militants fired rockets and mortars at Israel from Gaza, testing a shaky cease-fire. One rocket slammed into a kibbutz collective farm near a kindergarten but failed to explode.

The attacks topped the agenda at Israel's weekly Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said at the end of fighting in Gaza two weeks ago Israel had warned that if Palestinian shooting resumes there would be "disproportionate" retaliation.

"We will not reveal when, where or how we will respond," he said, "but we will respond."

Sporadic Palestinian rocket, mortar and shooting attacks have violated the Gaza cease-fire during the past week and Israel has responded with air strikes.

The Islamic militant group Hamas, which rules Gaza, has not claimed responsibility for the attacks but has not condemned them either.

Hamas spokesman Ayman Taha said Israel wants a cease-fire for free, but it would have to pay a price: namely, opening border crossings and lifting the crippling blockade on Gaza. Israel says that will not happen until Hamas releases a captive Israeli soldier held in Gaza for two and a half years.

Egypt is trying to hammer out a long-term cease-fire acceptable to both sides.



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