Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman MK Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) on Tuesday said that the killing of Osama bin Laden bears witness to the fact that the US has adopted Israel's strategy of targeting terrorist leaders.

In an interview with Israel Radio, Mofaz said that the strategy was originally adopted by Israel following the murder of nine Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.

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Mofaz called on the government to increase targeted killings of Palestinian terrorist leaders, adding that the strategy had been successful in curtailing terrorist activities.

The former defense minister added that if terrorist activity continued to originate from the Gaza Strip, the leaders of Hamas should be made aware that they are potential targets for assassination and that such targeted killings are considered unquestionably legitimate.

On Monday, a US national security official told Reuters that the US special forces team that hunted down Osama bin Laden was under orders to kill the al-Qaida mastermind, not capture him.

"This was a kill operation," the official said, making clear there was no desire to try to capture bin Laden alive in Pakistan.

On Sunday, a small American team led a helicopter raid on a large compound in a residential area of Abbottabad, Pakistan, some 35 miles north of Islamabad, killing the al-Qaida leader in a fire fight and capturing his body, according to senior administration officials. His body was later buried at sea.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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