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The firing zone spans several thousand acres near Israel.

Israel says most of the people being ordered to leave have permanent homes elsewhere.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak’s position was presented this week to Israel’s Supreme Court, which is weighing the Palestinians’ fate.

Shlomo Lecker, a lawyer representing some of the Palestinians, said Tuesday that his clients own much of the land in the firing zone. Mr. Lecker said the attempt to move them is part of a campaign to solidify Israel’s control over parts of the occupied lands it wants to retain.

YEMEN

Air raid kills suspected al Qaeda terrorists

SANAA — Yemeni warplanes killed at least five al-Qaeda-linked militants in overnight airstrikes against hideouts in the southern Abyan province, a security official said Tuesday.

The official said the attacks late on Monday concentrated on the al-Mahfad area, where terrorists took refuge after they were driven out from strongholds in the city of Zinjibar and the nearby town of Jaar, both of which the army recaptured from militants two months ago.

Yemeni media said earlier that the militants were consolidating their positions in al-Mahfad, quoting witnesses who said they saw military hardware headed to the area in trucks. Local residents, cited in the reports, are appealing to the government to concentrate airstrikes against militants in the area.

In Sanaa, also Monday night, gunmen fired at the car of Yahya al-Arasy, press secretary to President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, the official added. Mr. Al-Arasy escaped unharmed.

IRAQ

Court blocks president’s testimony

BAGHDAD — An Iraqi appeals court Tuesday refused to allow President Jalal Talabani to testify in a terror trial against the nation’s Sunni vice president, a case that has deepened the rift between the country’s largely sectarian-based political factions.

The latest session in the case against Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi follows the bloodiest day in Iraq in two years. Monday’s attacks killed 115 people and came on the heels of a declaration by al-Qaeda’s new leader that the movement hopes to re-establish itself in Sunni areas and re-create alliances with Sunni tribes.

Mr. al-Hashemi, one of Iraq’s highest-ranking Sunni politicians, is accused of running death squads that targeted Shiite officials and pilgrims. Mr. al-Hashemi, who is in Turkey avoiding trial, has denied the wrongdoing and has said he is the victim of a political vendetta by Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

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