Jerusalem: The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said on Tuesday that it killed Hamas’ minister of economy and another senior member of its politburo in drone strikes in the Gaza Strip on Monday night, Israeli media reported.
The military said the first, Jawad Abu Shamala, managed the terror group’s funds, “and earmarked funds for financing and directing terror in and outside the Gaza Strip”, Times of Israel reported.
The second, Zakariya Abu Moammar, was the head of the terror group’s internal relations, the IDF said, adding: “He was a senior Hamas decision-maker and coordinator between terror groups in the Gaza Strip.”
The IDF said he was a confidant to Hamas’ Gaza chief, Yahya Sinwar, and part of the terror group’s “senior forum, involved in the organisation’s decision-making and the planning of numerous terror activities against the State of Israel”, Times of Israel reported.
Meanwhile, Hamas has specifically threatened to attack the Israeli city of Ashkelon in response to Israel’s attacks on Gaza, BBC reported.
In a post on Telegram, Hamas said the residents of the city, just to the north of the Gaza Strip, have within hours to leave.
More than 4,500 rockets have already been fired from Gaza into Israel since Saturday, the Israeli military said.
Two foreign workers have been killed and another seriously injured in a rocket attack in the Eskhol region that borders Gaza, Israel’s emergency services have said, BBC reported.
An Israeli military spokesperson said its forces were installing “an iron wall” of tanks and helicopters along the Gaza border, ahead of an expected large-scale ground invasion of the besieged enclave, The Guardian reported.