Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon on Wednesday lifted a ban on diplomatic contacts with the Palestinian Authority imposed after six Israelis were killed in an attack on a Gaza Strip crossing. Aides to the two leaders met on Wednesday, Reuters reported.
Meanwhile, Israel has stopped the assassinations of Palestinian activists, fulfilling a key Palestinian demand for a truce, the Associated Press reported early Wednesday.
Israeli security officials said Israel has informed the Palestinians of its decision. On his part, Sharon's deputy, Ehud Olmert told Army Radio on Wednesday that "he doesn't know this decision (to stop assassinations)."
Meanwhile, Palestinians early Wednesday fired two Qassam rockets into southern Israel, causing no damage or casualties.
Also Wednesday morning, Israeli troops launched an operation near the West Bank city of Tulkarem, searching for activists and weapons, Israel Radio said. During the raid, the troops surrounded Palestinians' homes but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage caused by the raid.