Israel Says They’ve Neutralized Leadership of Gaza’s “Islamic Jihad” as Escalation Continues

The Israel Defense Force Operations Directorate announced Saturday that all the Palestinian Islamic Jihad leaders had been killed following the death of Khaled Mansour.

“This organization tried to carry out a deadly attack against Israeli citizens and IDF soldiers by launching an anti-tank guided missile, to kill civilians and soldiers,” Maj. Gen. Oded Basiuk said in a press conference Saturday. “We hit and foiled the chain [who sought to] execute this attack.”

The IDF’s most recent strike came after 10 people, including Islamic Jihad leader Tayseer al Jabari, were killed in attacks Friday.

JIHADI LEADER AMONG 10 KILLED IN AIRSTRIKES AND ROCKET ATTACKS IN GAZA

“Israeli soldiers have strict policies of when to fire,” IDF reserve soldier Moshe Schwartz told Red Alert Politics. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

Al Jabari, the commander of the terrorist group in northern Gaza, was assassinated Friday afternoon among nine others, and Mansour, al Jabari’s equivalent in southern Gaza, was assassinated among an unknown number of others.

While PIJ has some ties to Hamas, its hostility toward Israel showed no signs of softening, unlike how some Hamas leaders have changed their stances on the destruction of Israel. Prime Minister Yair Lapid described the group during a television appearance Friday as “an Iranian proxy that wants to destroy the state of Israel.”

CIA’s World Factbook estimates PIJ membership to be anywhere between 1,000 and several thousand.

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The Gaza Health Ministry put the number of casualties from Friday’s airstrikes at 10 killed, including a 5-year old, and 55 wounded, according to the New York Times. The newest clashes are the deadliest since the 11-day war last year.

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