islamic jihad rally gaza 248 88 ap.
(photo credit: AP)
Tens of thousands of Islamic Jihad loyalists held a rally in Gaza on Friday to commemorate the group's slain founder.
Holding plastic models of rockets and wearing masks and mock suicide bomber's vests, the members chanted "death to Israel" and "Muhammad's army will be back to wipe off the Hebrew state."
An Islamic Jihad leader, Nafez Azzam, called on the crowd Friday to reject negotiations with Israel and support violent resistance.
The group was founded in 1979 by Fathi Shikaki as an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. Shikaki was gunned down in Malta in October 1995 by a man on a motorcycle in an attack widely attributed to Israel.
Islamic Jihad, a terrorist organization smaller than Hamas, has carried out dozens of suicide bombings and other attacks against Israeli civilians.