TEL AVIV (Mar. 18)
Five Israeli soldiers were wounded in an artillery duel with Egyptian forces in the southern section of the Suez Canal zone today. Israel Air Force jets attacked Egyptian military targets in the central section of the canal zone for three and a quarter hours this morning and fought off a flight of Egyptian jets that took to the air to challenge them. A hit was scored on one of the Egyptian aircraft but it was not seen to crash and therefore was not listed as a “kill.” All Israeli planes returned safely. Israeli jets hit Egyptian targets again in the afternoon for 15 minutes and returned safely to base.
A Jordanian mortar shell exploded in a classroom in Kibbutz Ashdod Yaacov last night only minutes after children who had been rehearsing for a Purim play had taken refuge in a bomb shelter. The youngsters, aged 10-12, heard the whistle of incoming shells and managed to gain shelter before their classroom was hit. There were no casualties and no other damage apart from that suffered by the school. Israeli forces returned the fire.
Saboteurs from Lebanon blew up an electric pylon and a water tank for fresh fish at Kibbutz Yiftah in Upper Galilee last night. The settlement’s electric supply was cut off temporarily. An Israeli Army post on Mt. Hermon was attacked with bazookas and small arms last night. Return fire scattered the assailants. The attack was the first by ground forces against the position, which was hit by Syrian planes six months ago. An electric pylon near Gaza was damaged last night but electric current to Gaza was not cut off. An Israeli soldier was injured by a mine in the Jordan rift south of Umm Shurt last night. Nine Egyptian fishermen captured by Israeli forces with three boats in the Gulf of Suez last January were returned to Egypt along with their boats today. The men bad been fishing within the waters of Israeli-occupied territory.