TEL AVIV (Dec. 17)
Israel Air Force jets continued their daily pounding of Egyptian military positions in the Suez Canal zone today as artillery, mortar and small arms duels increased in intensity along the waterway. Three Israeli soldiers and a civilian tractor-driver were killed by Egyptian fire yesterday. The soldiers were identified as Lt. Avinoam Rotam of Kibbutz Shamir, Lt. Rafael Ben Aryeh of Kibbutz Ein Hachoresh and Pvt. Itzhak Fischer of Bnei Brak. All three were buried in their home communities today. The civilian’s name was not released. A military spokesman said that all planes returned safely.
An artillery duel developed in the Beisan Valley last night after Jordanian forces fired bazooka shells at Israeli Army positions near Kfar Ruppin, Hamadiyeh and Yardena. There were no casualties on the Israeli side. Fires were seen at the Jordanian positions.
A night curfew was imposed today on the shoreline between the Sinai town of El Arish to a point north of Gaza as a result of increasing activity by saboteurs in the Gaza Strip. An explosive charge went off in the labor exchange office in Dkabalya, near Gaza, last night causing no casualties but considerable damage. The curfew will be in effect until further notice.
Two Arab saboteurs were killed last night in an encounter with an Israeli patrol near Umm Sidra pass on the Jordan River. A bazooka and a shell were bund in their possession. There were no casualties on the Israeli side.