Gaza strike: Israeli forces kill top Islamic Jihad commander

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Jerusalem: Israel has claimed to have killed a top commander for Iranian-backed Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad in a targeted strike in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday.

Palestinian group Islamic Jihad has said one of its commanders was killed in an Israeli strike on his home in the besieged Gaza Strip.

The group’s armed wing announced the death in a statement on Tuesday after Israel confirmed it had targeted Baha Abu al-Atta, 42, in a strike.

Israel has also accused him of carrying out a series of cross-border attacks and planning more.

Israel also launched a missile attack targeting the home of an Islamic Jihad official in Damascus, killing one of his sons, Syrian state media said. Islamic Jihad said the target was the home of political leader Akram Al-Ajouri.

Warning sirens sounded in the coastal city of Tel Aviv where Israel’s only international airport is located.

The airstrike that killed the commander came days after the appointment of hard-line politician Naftali Bennett as Israel’s new defence minister. Bennett has long advocated tougher action against Palestinian militants.

In a statement, the Israeli military said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had authorised the operation against Al-Atta, blaming him for recent rocket, drone and sniper attacks against Israel, and attempted infiltrations into the country.

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