July 13, 2006

Israeli aircraft strike Beirut to Damascus road

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Israeli aircraft struck the main highway
linking Beirut to the Syrian capital Damascus early on Friday,
a Lebanese security source said.

The jets struck at least five separate times along
different points of the international route, the source said.

It was not immediately clear if there were any casualties
and witnesses said the road was clear of traffic after earlier
congestion as tourists fled Lebanon to neighboring Syria.

Israeli officials said on Thursday that Israeli forces
planned to strike the key highway as part of an assault aimed
at retrieving two soldiers seized by Lebanese Hizbollah

Israel had already bombed Lebanon's airports and blockaded
the country from the sea, bring trade and tourism to a halt.