Hamas has released a video threatening to kill senior Israeli defense officials in revenge for the assassination of senior Hamas operative Mazen Fuqaha last week.
The video, released Wednesday night by the Gaza-based Shehab News Agency, shows seven officials through the crosshairs of a sniper rifle with a short message in Hebrew and Arabic stating “the type of retribution will be based on the act.”
The seven targets were Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.- Gen. Gadi Eisenkot, Shin Bet Director Nadav Argaman, Mossad Director Yossi Cohen, IDF Deputy Chief of Staff Maj.-Gen.
Aviv Kochavi, Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan, and Oz Brigade commander David Zini.
Fuqaha, who was killed by unknown gunmen in the garage of his home, was sentenced to nine life sentences for sending a suicide terrorist who killed nine bus passengers.
Fuqaha was released eight years later as part of the Gilad Schalit prisoner swap. He was extradited to Gaza, from where he is believed to have founded Hamas’s West Bank headquarters and helped organize and conduct attacks against Israelis.
Israel has not commented on the killing, but Hamas has blamed Israel for it. During the funeral, Hamas Deputy Director Khalil al-Hayya warned that “if the enemy believes that the assassination will cause a power shift, he should know that the Izzadin Kassam [Hamas’s armed wing] knows to react similarly.”
Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal warned in a speech broadcast from Qatar on Monday that the group was in “an open war against the criminal enemy.”
“Israel decided to change the rules of the game, and we accept the challenge.”
Hamas has released threatening music videos in the past in an apparent attempt at psychological warfare, including at the height of the wave of violence in 2015-2016 and during Operation Protective Edge in 2014.
The last such video, “Zionists, You Will Perish in Gaza” was uploaded to YouTube in February calling for terrorist attacks and rockets against Israel promising death to those “who do not leave our land immediately” in an attempt to deter Israel from another round of fighting.