הצעדה של אנשי חמאס בעזה
Members of Hamas' military wing in Gaza
Photo: AP
Members of the Hamas military wing in Gaza

61 Hamas fighters killed in Gaza fighting, Palestinian paper says

Report contradicts Israeli claim that over 200 terrorists eliminated during 11-day conflict that ended Friday; Cairo invites Hamas leader to discuss truce, rebuilding efforts as U.S. said seeking to curb group's influence, boost PA in Strip

Elior Levy, Ilana Ushomirsky |
Published: 05.26.21 , 13:03
Sixty-one Hamas fighters were killed during the 11-day conflict between Israel and the terror organizations in Gaza that ended last Friday, the Palestinian daily Al-Quds reported Wednesday.
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  • According to the report, eight of the 61, who were all members of the Hamas military wing, were senior officials in the group.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    הצעדה של אנשי חמאס בעזה
    הצעדה של אנשי חמאס בעזה
    Members of the Hamas military wing in Gaza
    (Photo: AP)
    Israel however said that some 225 terrorists, including 25 senior officials, were killed during the fighting. The number included members of both Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).
    Throughout the fighting, Hamas refrained from reporting how many of its fighters had been killed. The terror group was possibly unable to ascertain the true number of dead until after the ceasefire when it started digging through the rubble left by IDF strikes to look for bodies.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    A crater remains where the al Masri home stood before it was destroyed in an Israeli strike onBeit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip
    A crater remains where the al Masri home stood before it was destroyed in an Israeli strike onBeit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip
    The aftermath of IDF strike in the northern Gaza Strip during the recent fighting
    (Photo: AP)
    During the operation, the IDF focused most of its bombing efforts on Hamas' "Metro" terror tunnel system, used to carry out attacks on Israel and move fighters and weapons around the Gaza. A military spokesperson said that over 100 km of tunnels were destroyed during the fighting.
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    hamas militants in terror tunnel
    hamas militants in terror tunnel
    Members of Hamas inside a tunnel dug under Gaza
    (Photo: Reuters)
    The IDF also targeted senior members of both terror organizations, including Bassem Issa, the commander of the Hamas Gaza Brigade, and Hossam Abu Harbid, the commander of the PIJ Northern Brigade.
    Abu Harbid replaced Baha Abu al-'Ata, whose assassination in November 2019 triggered a three-day round of fighting in Gaza.
    Israel also said it tried twice to kill Hamas military leader Mohammed Deif, who has so far survived at least seven attempts on his life by the IDF.
    Meanwhile, efforts continue to reinforce the ceasefire and even perhaps reach some understandings between both parties.
    Hamas announced Tuesday that the organization's leader, Ismail Haniyeh, had been invited to visit Egypt to discuss the truce and plans to rehabilitate the Gaza Strip.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    מנהיג חמאס איסמעיל הנייה נפגש עם עיתונאים זרים בעזה
    מנהיג חמאס איסמעיל הנייה נפגש עם עיתונאים זרים בעזה
    Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh
    (Photo: AP)
    Egypt had previously refrained from inviting Haniyeh to the country since he left the Gaza Strip for Qatar several years ago.
    An Egyptian source told London-based Al-Araby Al-Jadeed newspaper that the U.S. demanded had that Egypt reduce Hamas' influence in the Gaza Strip, while expanding the Palestinian Authority's role and presence in the Palestinian enclave.
    U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Tuesday that his country would ensure that any international aid entering the enclave would stay out of Hamas hands.
    The terror group, which has ruled the Gaza Strip since kicking out the PA in 2007, has often been accused of appropriating civilian aid for military purposes.


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