Eight powerful explosions were heard in central Beirut within a span of 20 minutes, but the exact target of the attacks were not known. The Voice of Lebanon said several fires erupted and thick smoke rose from the area.
There were not immediate reports of damage or casualties.
VOL and LBC TV said a bridge was also attacked by the Israeli jets at Heitsa in the Akkar province in north of Lebanon. Both stations said initial reports from the area indicated there were casualties.
This comes one day after Israel grabbed strategic high ground in south Lebanon but said it was delaying a new ground offensive toward the Litani River, as diplomats said the United Nations had made progress toward constructing a cease-fire agreement that could go to a vote before the weekend.
Israel lost one soldier in fierce battles with Hezbollah guerrillas, and the Lebanese interior minister said Israeli forces detained 350 Lebanese soldiers and police in their garrison in the southern city of Marjayoun. Israeli denied the report.
With fighting in its fifth week and Israeli troops closer to Beirut than at any time since the war began, reports emerged of progress toward unlocking the stalemate on a United Nations cease-fire resolution. At the United Nations, U.S. Ambassador John Bolton said there could be a vote by Friday.
"We've closed some of the areas of disagreement with the French," he said.
Prime Minister Fuad Saniora met twice Thursday with U.S. Ambassador Jeffrey Feltman, and a senior aide to the Lebanese leader, who spoke on the customary condition of anonymity, said new ideas for ending the fighting involved combining two envisioned resolutions into one overarching document.
A similar report arose in Israel where lawmaker Otniel Schneller, an adviser to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, said the United Nations was at work on a new approach.
"A new proposal is being drafted, which has positive significance that may bring the war to an end," Schneller said.
Broadly speaking, a much debated U.S.-French plan called for establishing a cease-fire in one document, with a second and later resolution that would organize a peacekeeping force and outline details of the peace.
In other developments:
While Israel appeared braced for a prolonged conflict after leaders there authorized a major new ground offensive deeper into Lebanon, officials said they were temporarily holding back to give diplomats time to craft the cease-fire deal.
Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz said the military would use "all of the tools" to cripple Hezbollah if diplomacy was not successful soon, but later Thursday he softened those remarks, perhaps in response to diplomatic progress.
"If we can achieve that by diplomatic means and are sure that there is an intention to implement that document, we shall definitely be in a position where the military operation has achieved diplomatic space and a new situation has been created here in the north," Peretz said.
Israeli ground troops took control of the mainly Christian town of Marjayoun before dawn and blasted away throughout the day at strongly fortified Hezbollah positions in several directions.
And Israeli soldiers worked their way through southern Lebanese neighborhoods, breaking through earthworks and looking through the basements of homes where Hezbollah fighters hide with their weapons, reports CBS News correspondent Robert Berger.
A huge explosion rocked the center of the town and the surrounding countryside about sunset and a big fire could be seen raging from a vantage point in Ibl el-Saqi, about 2 miles to the east.