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Islamic Jihad in Beirut Claims Tel Aviv Bombing

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Islamic Jihad carried out a suicide bomb attack in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv that killed four people on Friday, a Beirut-based official from the organization said on Saturday.
"We confirm that we carried out the operation," the official, who declined to be named, told Reuters.

Friday's bombing at a Tel Aviv nightclub dealt a heavy blow to peace hopes that had brightened since Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon agreed to a ceasefire at a Feb. 8 summit.

Top officials of the three main Palestinian militant groups denied involvement in the attack. Abbas blamed an unnamed "third party."

A West Bank cell of the militant group Islamic Jihad claimed the attack but the faction's Gaza-based leadership denied any knowledge and said it remained committed to maintaining

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