Israel says it eliminated 3 key Hamas figures in deadly Gaza strikes

In a statement providing details on the strikes, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) identified the three Hamas figures as Mansour Adil Mansour Kashlan, Walid Abed Abu Dalal, and Muhammad Abdullah Khaled al-Qanou’a.

The Israeli military said on Saturday that it has “eliminated” three prominent members of the Palestinian militant group Hamas in a series of deadly air strikes in the Gaza Strip over the past week.

In a statement providing details on the strikes, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) identified the three Hamas figures as Mansour Adil Mansour Kashlan, Walid Abed Abu Dalal, and Muhammad Abdullah Khaled al-Qanou’a.

Kashlan was described as being involved in coordinating terror attacks in Israel and the occupied West Bank. He was killed in an Israeli air strike on central Gaza on Thursday.

Abu Dalal reportedly served as the head of the technology department in Hamas’s internal security forces. He too was killed in a strike in central Gaza on the same day.

The IDF said Hamas’s technology department and internal security apparatus comprise a significant part of Hamas’ counter-espionage and the ability to attack [Israeli] troops in the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, al-Qanou’a, who was killed earlier this week, was said to be a member of Hamas’s military staff responsible for managing the group’s munitions.

The latest flare-up of deadly violence began last week after an Israeli military raid in the West Bank refugee camp of Jenin led to Palestinian militant groups in Gaza firing several rounds of rockets into Israeli territory. Israel responded with air strikes across the coastal Palestinian enclave.

At least 33 Palestinians, including fighters and civilians, have been killed in the Israeli bombardment since the fighting erupted on May 9th. Among the dead are 8 children and 4 women. Over 100 Palestinians have been wounded.

Hamas, which has governed Gaza since 2007, has vowed to retaliate against Israel and warned that continued Israeli strikes risked triggering an all-out war.

Israel says its operations target only militant elements but Palestinian civilians inevitably get caught in the crossfire of such bombardments on the densely populated Gaza Strip. With the hostilities showing no sign of abating, concerns are growing of a descent into a broader conflict.