Among the dead is Raed al-Attar, who was behind the capture of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in 2006.
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Three of Hamas’s most senior commanders in the southern Gaza Strip were killed this morning in an air strike by the IDF in the Al-Sultan neighborhood of Rafah. The three are Mohammed Abu Shamala, Mohammed Barhoum, and Raed al-Attar, of the southern division of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas. The IDF has confirmed the strike.
Al-Attar (40) was the commander in the Rafah district of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam. He was among the planners of the capture of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in June 2006, and is also considered to be among the architects Hamas’s attack tunnels project. He is known to have been behind several terrorist attacks on Israeli targets.
Yesterday, Abu Obeida, the spokesman for Hamas’ military wing, said that Hamas would fire rockets at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport, and called on foreign airlines to avoid landing there. “We warn aircraft arriving at Ben Gurion that we will fire at 6:00 am, ” Abu Obeida said. Despite the threats, all was quiet at Ben Gurion Airport this morning and air traffic continues there as normal.
Abu Obeida also threatened that Hamas would fire rockets at football stadiums in Israel on Saturday, when the football was due to begin. “The occupiers and the world must accede to our demands and stop the occupation, ” he said. The start of the football season was expected to be postponed even before Hamas’s announcement.