Hamas affiliated media sources reported on Saturday that one of the group's naval operatives died overnight during a
mission at sea opposite the Gaza coast, Israel Radio reported.

Palestinian media initially reported that the deceased was a fisherman who drowned when he fell off his boat. 

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Israel news outlet Walla named the commando as Hamdi al-Sultan, adding that he died while carrying out a 'jihadi mission.' 

The IDF does not comment on incidents that occur outside of Israeli territory. 

In September, Hamas announced that another member of its naval commando unit drowned in a training accident off Gaza.

During Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, four divers reached Zikim Beach, north of Gaza to try and attack Israeli targets.

They were eventually identified by IDF lookouts and killed in a strike by the Israel Navy.  

Last year, Customs officers and the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) intercepted an attempt to smuggle diving suits into the Gaza Strip. Security sources assess that the package was part of Hamas’s attempts to build up its offensive military capabilities.

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