is vowing to avenge the death of commander Ahmed Al-Jabari, who was killed in an airstrike earlier on Wednesday. Hamas official Ismail al-Ashqar said that the “resistance’s possibilities” are now open and include suicide bombings and high profile attacks inside Israeli cities.
“The resistance can cause Israel great misery,” he said. Shortly after the hit, a Color Red siren sounded in Hof Ashkelon and two rockets exploded in an open area. No injuries were reported.
Hamas’ government in Gaza issued a brief statement mourning the loss of Al-Jabari who was described as “a great commander and one of the symbols of the resistance.” Hamas is holding Israel fully accountable for his murder. “The assassination constitutes an exacerbation of the Zionist escalation in the Gaza Strip and opens the door for a new phase of conflict,” Hamas said.
|Jabari hit in Gaza (Video: Reuters)|
In addition, Abu Ahmed, the spokesman for the Islamic Jihad’s military wing, said that the enemy must carry full responsibility. “There are no more red lines in our response,” he said. The group has raised its alert level to the maximum.
Hamas official Khalil al-Hiya added that Israel
will pay for the assassination and bear the consequences. “The Zionist enemy does not recognize agreements and does not honor decisions,” he said. “The campaign is open.” He added that Israel will soon realize that the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades are strong enough to overcome the death of their leader.
The Palestinian Authority also commented on the hit. Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat strongly condemned the act which he dubbed a crime. “Israel now bears the responsibility of the outcomes of the assassination.”
Ahmed Al-Jabari, who ran Hamas’ armed wing was killed in an airstrike in the Gaza Strip along with his son after their car was targeted by an Israeli missile.
The IDF said Jabari's assassination marks the beginning of Operation Cloud Pillar against Gaza terrorists.
As part of the operation, Israeli aircraft struck at least 20 rocket-launching pads belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Dozens of long-range rockets were destroyed, including Fajr-5 missiles. The destroyed rockets and missiles had a range of more than 40 kilometers. One of the attacks killed another Hamas commander. Military sources said that other terrorist leaders will be targeted.
You can contact Elior Levy, Ynet's Palestinian Affairs Correspondent, at: firstname.lastname@example.org