Terror groups threaten rocket strikes if Israel resumes targeted killings

There have been growing talks in Israeli media that Israel may assassinate Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar following the Elad terror attack.

YAHYA SINWAR, leader of Hamas in Gaza, gestures on stage during a rally in Gaza City on May 24 (photo credit: ATIA MOHAMMED/FLASH90)
YAHYA SINWAR, leader of Hamas in Gaza, gestures on stage during a rally in Gaza City on May 24
(photo credit: ATIA MOHAMMED/FLASH90)

Palestinian terror groups have threatened to launch terrorist attacks inside Israeli cities if the government resumes the policy of targeted killings, the Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Mayadeen TV station reported on Saturday.

According to the report, the terror groups “informed the mediators that the return of the assassination policy means the return of bombings inside the occupied cities.”

The threat came amid growing talk in the Israeli media that Israel may assassinate Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar in response to Thursday’s terror attack in the city of Elad, which resulted in the murder of three Israeli men.

Al-Mayadeen quoted unnamed sources as saying that Hamas relayed to the Egyptians a message to the effect that the terror group was not worried about Israel’s threats to assassinate its leaders.

“The price for such foolishness is known to the enemy,” the sources said. “The resistance will burn the cities of the center [of Israel] and will direct massive missile strikes on Gush Dan if it carries out its threats.”

Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar speaks to the media following a meeting with U.N. mediators, in Gaza City June 21, 2021.  (credit: MOHAMMED SALEM/REUTERS)Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar speaks to the media following a meeting with U.N. mediators, in Gaza City June 21, 2021. (credit: MOHAMMED SALEM/REUTERS)

Egyptian sources were quoted over the weekend as saying that Cairo rules out the possibility that Israel would resume the policy of targeted assassinations.

The sources told the Qatari-owned Al-Araby Al-Jadeed online news website that Egyptian mediators had previously warned Israel that harming Sinwar or any other leaders of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad would mean that the Jewish state “has taken a decision to launch an all-out military confrontation.”

The sources added that the Egyptians were recently contacted by the US administration with the goal of preventing an escalation.

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, who is based in Qatar, said in a statement shortly after the Elad terror attack that Israel’s threats to assassinate Sinwar and other terror leaders “will not deter us from defending our land, our holy sites, our right to return and the liberation of our prisoners.”

Haniyeh added that the “resistance” against Israel “will continue until we achieve our full goals.”

Hamas political bureau member Izzat al-Risheq, said on Friday that the Israeli “threats and incitement to assassinate Yahya Sinwar or any of the movement’s leaders don’t frighten us.”

Risheq said that the threats were part of a “failed Israeli attempt to reassure the terrified settlers.”

The threats, he added, would only increase Hamas’s “determination to defend Jerusalem and the Aqsa Mosque.”