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Saturday, July 22, 2006

Latest developments in the Middle East

July 22 (Reuters) - Here are developments in the Middle East.

* Israeli forces carry out limited incursions a few kilometres inside southern Lebanon

* Israeli army plans to step up incursions but not launch mass invasion in its war against Hizbollah, Israeli military source says

* U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will go to Middle East on Sunday while resisting international pressure for immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hizbollah

* Rice calls international conference for Wednesday that is expected to formulate plans for a ceasefire and possible deployment of foreign troops, top U.N. official says

* Israeli army says it attacked more than 150 targets in the last 24 hours. Witnesses say warplanes launched repeated raids on the town of al-Khiam and near the port of Tyre

* U.N. peacekeepers on the border say Israeli forces withdrew from village of Marwaheen, just inside Lebanon, but were still further east in Maroun al-Ras

* Mass evacuation from Lebanon to Cyprus exceeds 25,000 people

* Israel says it will ease access to Lebanon for relief groups to deliver emergency supplies to thousands of people driven from their homes by Israeli bombing

* Fighting has killed at least 345 people in Lebanon, mainly civilians. Nineteen Israeli soldiers and 15 civilians have died

* Bush administration is rushing precision-guided bombs to Israel, which asked for them last week, New York Times reports
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