2 Bombs Injure 13 in Tel Aviv; Arabs Blamed

From Times Wire Services

Two bombs concealed in trash cans exploded within minutes of each other in a slum area of south Tel Aviv on Thursday evening, injuring at least 13 people.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed the bombings on Palestinian guerrillas. "It is clear to us now, almost beyond any doubt, that this was a terrorist attack," he said.

Israel had been expecting an attack by radical Palestinians hoping to scuttle efforts to complete an Israeli-Palestinian agreement on an Israeli troop pullout in the occupied West Bank.

The explosives, believed to be pipe bombs packed with nails for greater destruction, went off just before 8:30 p.m. in the Neve Shaanan pedestrian walkway near an abandoned bus station in the center of the city's large foreign worker community.

Police detained an Arab suspected of having planted the bombs, Israel's Army Radio reported.

The blasts occurred about a mile from the Defense Ministry, where Netanyahu was meeting with U.S. envoy Dennis Ross in an effort to bridge the remaining gaps blocking an agreement with the Palestinians. Army Radio said the session ended early today without a breakthrough.

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