Israel and Egypt charged each other with breaking the Middle East cease-fire along the southern Suez Canal for the second time today only hours after it went into effect, but the truce appeared to be taking hold again as night fell.
United Nations observers were en route to the fronts of the Middle East War to oversee the shaky ceasefire.
Israel charged that the Egyptian Third Army tried to break out of its encirclement west of the canal and that 15 Egyptian planes had been shot down in the fighting.
Israel and Egypt continued to trade charges in addition to the shots. In sharply contrasting pictures of the situation, Israel claimed Egypt's army was disintegrating in surrenders, and Egypt claimed control of most of the Suez Canal.
Egypt charged Israeli violations of the cease-fire with Egyptian troops being forced to respond.
After another United Nations resolution punctuated by some of the bitterest exchanges in the history of the world organization, the cease-fire had gone into effect for the second time at 7 a.m.
The Israeli Command said that the Third Egyptian Army, in the sector between Ismalia and Suez City, had been encircled by its forces on the west bank of the canal inside Egypt proper. It had previously accused the army's commander, Maj. Gen. Abdul Munem Wazel, of instigating the fighting that broke the cease-fire the first time yesterday.
On the other fronts, on the northern end of the canal and in Syria, the truce appeared to be holding. There was widespread uncertainty of what happens next. Nor was there any word how the peace talks specified in the United Nations truces resolution sponsored by the United States and Russia will take place.
Before the latest Israeli announcement, Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Dayan said in an interview on the Israeli National Radio:
"I hope we've come to the end to the fighting in this campaign. Syria has already agreed into the cease-fire. What remains of the Egyptian army is not able to answer in war. Therefore, the cease-fire is not only formal but also substantial."