Palestinian groups claim credit for barrel attack

February 2, 2010 15:02

Palestinian militant groups in Gaza say they planted two barrels of explosives that washed up in an Israeli port.

A joint statement on Tuesday from three groups — Islamic Jihad, the Popular Resistance Committees and the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades — says they were behind the explosive-filled barrels at Israel's southern port of Ashkelon the previous day.

The barrels weighed about 175 pounds (80 kilograms) each and were to be detonated by remote control.

Police say each barrel had about 22 pounds (10 kilograms) of explosives. A bomb squad defused one barrel, while the explosives in the second barrel blew up while a robot was inspecting them.

The aborted attack comes amid tensions over the assassination of a Hamas commander in Dubai last month.

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