Hamas claim of responsibility for terror attack in Ariel reportedly gives IDF freedom to escalate in Gaza, per reports.
By David Hellerman, World Israel News
Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad have vowed to resume missile attacks and suicide bombings if Israel renews targeted assassinations on Gaza terror leaders.
This was conveyed by the Gaza terror groups to Egyptian mediators, according to Hezbollah’s Al Mayadeen TV.
“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.”
Israel’s Channel 12 News reported that Jerusalem sent a message to Hamas’s Gaza chief, Yahya Sinwar, that Hamas’s claim of responsibility for a terror attack in Ariel gives the IDF freedom for military operations in Gaza. Vyacheslav Golev, a 23-year-old security guard, was shot dead by Palestinian terrorists at the entrance to Ariel on April 29.
Channel 12 also reported that Israel believes that Sinwar’s calls to violence inspired Thursday’s Palestinian terror attack in Elad in which three Israelis were killed by two Palestinians armed with an axe and a knife.
However, Ynet reported that the IDF has recommended against renewing targeted assassinations, saying the military has plans in place but does not believe the time is right for them.
A manhunt for As’ad a-Rafa’i, 19, and Sabhi Abu Shaki, 20, was continuing on Saturday night. It’s not believed that either Palestinian is a member of Hamas.
In an incendiary speech on April 30, Sinwar called for a regional war if Israel, he claimed, threatened the status quo on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. “Let everyone who has a rifle, ready it. And if you don’t have a rifle, ready your cleaver or an axe, or a knife,” Sinwar said.
The last time Israel carried out a targeted assassination was at the very beginning of Operation Guardian of the Walls last year. Mohammed Abdullah Fayyad, a Hamas commander, was killed in a drone strike on May 10, 2021.