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An Israeli airstrike killed a Palestinian militant and wounded three other people in the southern Gaza Strip Monday, the Jewish state's first apparent "disproportionate" retaliation for the resumption of rocket and mortar attacks. Defense Minister Ehud Barak told a TV interviewer that Israel isn't planning a wider offensive in Gaza, but his remarks appeared to contradict those of Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, who said Sunday that a new offensive would be conducted if necessary. In Egypt, where diplomats are attempting to broker a long-term truce, a spokesman for Gaza's Hamas government said his side was ready to cease hostilities for a year if Israel would agree to reopen border crossings.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for a terrorist bombing Monday that killed 21 police reservists in southern Afghanistan and wounded at least 20 others. The attack, at a training center in Uruzgan Province, occurred after the bomber broke free from guards who decided his behavior was suspicious. He ran to an area where the reservists were engaged in an exercise class and detonated an explosive vest. The attack was the worst of its type in Afghanistan in months.


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