Israeli Army Targets Hamas Military Leadership After Failing To Stop Rocket Fire From Gaza (Photos, Videos)

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Israeli Army Targets Hamas Military Leadership After Failing To Stop Rocket Fire From Gaza (Photos, Videos)

Israel Air Force airplane F-16 D ‘Barak Cobra’prepares for take off. June 28 2010. Photo by Ofer Zidon/Flash90

After failing to stop rocket fire from the Gaza Strip, the Israeli military began targeting military commanders of the Hamas Movement.

On May 12th, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced that they had assassinated members of Hamas’s General Staff Forum in a series of strikes on Gaza City and Khan Younis.

The military said that the Palestinian commanders were assassinated as apart of a “joint operation” with the Shin Bet security service.

The targeted commanders were identified as:

  • Bassem Issa, commander of Hamas Gaza City Brigade;
  • Jamaa Tahla, head of its cyber command and responsible for improving the accuracy of the group’s rockets;
  • Jamal Zabeda, head of research and special projects in its munitions productions department;
  • Hazzem Hatib, Hamas chief engineer in munitions department;
  • Sami Radwan, leader of Hamas technical intelligence department;
  • Walid Smali, responsible for industrial equipment for Hamas weapons production department.

“In addition, 10 other operatives from Hamas weapons production and research and development department were killed,” the Shin Bet said in a statement.

Some of the targeted commanders were reportedly close to Muhammad Deif, the leader of Hamas military wing the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades.

Palestinian sources reported several Israeli pinpoint strikes on vehicles in different parts of Gaza. The strikes are likely linked to the IDF-Shin Bet operation.

The IDF announcement came as the clashes with Gaza factions, led by Hamas, are heating up. In the morning the IDF said that a drone launched from the Palestinian region was intercepted by the Iron Done system.

Afterwards, the military announced that it had eliminated a unit preparing to launch an explosive drone from Gaza into Israel, without providing any additional information.

Despite Israel’s intensive strikes, Palestinian factions continue to launch rockets from Gaza. At least 50 rockets were launched by Hamas at the city of Ashdod. The group also fired 15 rockets at the town of Dimona, where Israel’s main nuclear plant is located.

The situation in Gaza will likely escalate further before the end of the day. The Israeli leadership may decide to launch a full-scale operation against Palestinian factions in an upcoming meeting in Tel Aviv.

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