Israel Pulls Back Army, Checkpoints

JERUSALEM?Israel made it a bit easier for Palestinians to move around the West Bank, pulling back troops and removing checkpoints Monday as part of an effort to patch up a frayed Mideast truce.

But there was also violence. For the second straight day, an Islamic militant with the Hamas movement was killed in the West Bank, this time in a car explosion in Nablus. Palestinians blamed Israel. But Israel, which took responsibility for a killing Sunday, refused to say whether it was behind Monday?s attack.

Speaking to Israel?s parliament, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said the security measures were being scaled back for Palestinians who ?want to bring home a crust of bread and bring up their children in peace.?

But he warned that Israeli troops would be sent back if Israeli civilians came under attack.