From the New York Times:
An Israeli air raid on the southern Lebanese town of Qana killed dozens of civilians today, many of them children, marking the bloodiest day of this conflict and putting enormous pressure on Israel and the United States to move rapidly toward a cease-fire.
Israel said the Qana strike was aimed at Hezbollah fighters firing rockets into Israel from the area, but the attack caused a residential apartment building to collapse, crushing Lebanese civilians who were spending the night in the basement, where they believed they were safe.
According to hospital and morgue officials in Qana, there were 28 confirmed dead, 20 of them children. Some officials put the death toll higher, with the Lebanese prime minister, Fouad Siniora, saying there were more than 50 people killed and news agencies saying the toll was at least 57.
Residents said as many as 60 people were inside the building, most of them unaccounted for.
Whatever the actual toll, the deaths in Qana set off a chain reaction, with protests in Beirut against the United States, Israel, the United Nations and moderate Arab countries. Hezbollah and the Palestinian group Hamas vowed revenge. There were condemnations worldwide of the Israeli tactics in this war against the radical Shia militia group, which set off the hostilities by a raid into Israel across the international border, and new calls for an immediate end to the fighting.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice canceled a planned trip to Beirut and decided to return to Washington on Monday to work out a speedy resolution to the conflict that could be brought before the United Nations this week.
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