Family of 7 killed in air attack


A Lebanese woman and her six children were killed yesterday in an Israeli air raid near Baalbek in eastern Lebanon. Israel described the incident as a mistake.

Shia Muslim Hizbullah radio said Ms Nadwa Othman and her six children - three boys and three girls aged three to 11 - died in the Israeli raid on an area under Syrian control.

Hizbullah radio, the Voice of the Oppressed, said her husband, the father of the six children, Mr Mohammad Othman, had survived a "Zionist massacre".

Witnesses said the victims were killed by a missile fired by a fighter-bomber at a farm owned by a Lebanese army officer, Ahmad Ayoub, in Janta, 80 km from the Israeli-occupied "security zone" in southern Lebanon.

An Israeli army spokesman confirmed yesterday that Israeli warplanes had staged an attack on targets in eastern Lebanon's Bekaa Valley. He said the planes hit their targets and returned to base.

Hizbullah spearheads a campaign to drive Israeli forces out of the buffer zone it occupies to prevent cross-border attacks.

Israel has conducted 100 air raids in Lebanon this year, most of them against Hizbullah targets.