IAF strike kills senior Hamas leader

Ahmed Awad was responsible for manufacturing Kassam rockets.

Kassam Ashkelon 224.88 (photo credit: )
Kassam Ashkelon 224.88
(photo credit: )
Two Hamas operatives were killed and four others wounded when the IDF opened fire on a Kassam rocket-firing cell in northern Gaza on Wednesday. Wednesday evening, an IAF air strike targeted the vehicle of a senior Hamas operative in Rafah, indicating that the IDF demonstrated that it had no intention to stop its offensive against Gaza's terror infrastructure despite the morning's tragedy. Ahmed Awad, the head of Hamas's Kassam rocket firing unit, was killed along with another Hamas when missiles struck their car as it traveled in the southern Gaza Strip. Awad was reportedly the nephew of PA Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar.
  • The Palestinians aren't broke Israel was placed on high security alert of Palestinians seeking to renew suicide attacks inside the Green Line Wednesday, hours after errant IDF artillery shells tore through an apartment compound in Beit Hanoun, killing nineteen members of an extended family, including eight children. In light of the threats, Israel Police Inspector General Moshe Karadi raised the national alert level to number 5 - one below emergency level - and IDF soldiers and Police deployed additional road blocks and increased patrols along the Green Line and around cities in order to prevent infiltrations, security officials said. Security officials said they had intelligence of four specific terror cells with explosives seeking to strike inside Israel. The officials said there were fourteen more general terror threats of cells in the final stages of preparations. Eleven Kassam rockets were launched from northern Gaza at Israeli borderline communities following the artillery attack, while in a rash of attacks in the West Bank, Palestinians assaulted Israeli vehicles with blocks, Molotov cocktails, and gunfire. One Kassam missile slammed into a central Sderot street, spraying shrapnel that injured one man lightly and heavily damaged nearby shops. Several civilians suffered from shock and were treated on the scene, medics said .A second Kassam struck an open field south of Ashkelon, igniting a large fire. Several firefighters were dispatched to extinguish the blaze, and no wounded were reported. In a second shooting attack near Hebron, an Israeli driver escaped injury when Palestinian opened fire on his vehicle. At least two other Israeli vehicles were attacked with rocks and bottles as they drove on roads near Hebron. An IDF soldier was lightly wounded when Palestinian rioters angry about the Beit Hanoun attack threw stones and Molotov cocktail at the city's Jewish neighborhood, the army said. Several Palestinians were injured when the soldiers dispersed the crowd with tear gas and rubber bullets. Jerusalem Post Staff and AP contributed to this report,