Israel hit targets in Gaza for the fourth day in a row, while Palestinian militants responded with more rockets aimed at Israel. In Cairo, diplomats from the region gathered in a bid to negotiate a truce.
In a raid on a ship allegedly bound for the Gaza Strip, the Israeli navy has seized rockets it claims to be from Iran. Israel said the weapons were destined for Palestinian militants, adding the evidence was "clear cut."
German Chancellor and most of her ministers have arrived in Israel for two days of joint cabinet talks. Flying separately from Madrid, Germany's foreign minister has criticized Israel's settlements policy.
World leaders have praised and questioned the legacy of Ariel Sharon in the wake of the former Israeli prime minister’s death. He had lingered in a coma since January 4, 2006, after suffering a massive stroke.
As the Middle East descends further into violence and turmoil, the Palestinian Hamas group finds itself facing a slew of domestic and external problems. Those constraints may force it to change its role in the region.
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