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Israeli aircraft carry out overnight strikes on Gaza
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Israeli F16 warplanes carried out early on Wednesday three successive air-strikes on the border line between southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah and Egypt, no injures reported, residents said.

Witnesses said that Israeli F16 war fighters fired three air-to- ground missiles within a short period of time on the border area between the town and Egypt, causing damages to several houses in the area.

An Israeli army spokesman said in a statement that the airstrikes were a response to a bombing attack carried out by Gaza militants early on Tuesday, in which one Israeli soldier was killed and three wounded.

The residents of Rafah said Israeli warplanes targeted the tunnels dug under Gaza-Egypt's borders with three heavy missiles. Israel insists that these tunnels are used for weapons smuggling.

The renewal of violence between Israel and the Palestinians in Gaza came after one week ceasefire has been unilaterally declared first by Israel and then followed by Gaza militant groups, led by the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas).

Earlier on Tuesday, media reports coming from Cairo quoted Hamas negotiator to the truce talks with Egypt Ayman Taha as saying that it was agreed to extend the ceasefire until February 5.

Hamas has, meanwhile, said in a written statement that the movement accepted to extend the ceasefire, but has not accepted yet a truce agreement. However, Egypt hoped a longer term truce to be announced on early February.

(Xinhua News Agency January 28, 2009)

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