IDF kills three Hamas terrorist leaders, terror group claims 50 hostages killed in strikes

Hamas spokesman released a statement on the terrorist group’s Telegram channel claiming that Israeli strikes had also killed hostages within the Strip.

By Mindy Rubenstein, World Israel News 

The IDF killed three senior Hamas commanders in a targeted airstrike on Thursday, prompting the terror group to release a statement claiming that 50 Israeli hostages had been killed in strikes to date.

Thursday’s strikes targeted terrorists in the Daraj Tuffah Battalion, which the IDF said was a “significant brigade” within the terrorist organization. Rifaat Abbas, commander of the Daraj Tuffah Battalion, was killed, along his deputy commander Ibrahim Jadba, and Tarek Maarouf, a combat support commander.

All three had played pivotal roles in the October 7 attacks against Israel, which claimed the lives of over 1,400 Israeli civilians, wounded more than 4,000, and led to the kidnapping of 224 hostages currently being held in Gaza.

The operation was carried out based on intelligence provided by the IDF and the Shin Bet security agency.

Hamas’ al-Qassam Brigades spokesperson, Abu Obaida, released a statement on the terrorist group’s Telegram channel claiming that Israeli strikes had also killed hostages within the Strip.

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“Al-Qassam Brigades estimates that the number of Zionist prisoners killed in the Gaza Strip as a result of Zionist bombing and massacres reached approximately 50 people,” the Telegram statement said.

It wasn’t the first time Hamas made such a claim.

A week after their deadly attack, the terror group alleged that a series of Israeli airstrikes had resulted in the deaths of nine hostages, among which four were foreign nationals.

Earlier on Thursday, another IDF strike killed Shadi Barud, the deputy head of Hamas’ intelligence. Barud was also behind the planning of the October 7th massacre, working in close coordination with Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar, the IDF said.

Former national security adviser Yaakov Amidror highlighted longstanding misconceptions regarding Hamas by allies of Israel, who claimed that the terror group was showing “more responsibility.”

“We stupidly began to believe that it was true,” he told the Reuters news agency. “So, we made a mistake. We are not going to make this mistake again and we will destroy Hamas, slowly but surely.”