Hamas provided hiding places for leaders of Palestinian Islamic Jihad during Israel’s five-day offensive in the Gaza Strip, according to a report Sunday.
The terror group’s military wing lent its assistance after Israel began Operation Shield and Arrow with the assassination of three senior PIJ commanders on Tuesday, Channel 12 news reported, without citing sources.
Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, did not actively take part in the recent round of violence, effectively helping to keep it limited.
In its campaign, Israel eliminated some of PIJ’s senior leadership in a series of airstrikes, while the terror group fired some 1,500 rockets at Israel until an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire came into effect Saturday night.
Hamas and PIJ are both part of the so-called “Joint Operations Room” of Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip. After the truce, the groups said that “the round of fighting is over” but warned that if “the policy of assassinations [renews]… we are ready with a firm finger on the trigger.”
Channel 12 also said that Iran, a major backer of Islamic Jihad, promised the terror group $5 million for every day of conflict with Israel, without providing a source for the claim.
Meanwhile, as the fighting was going on in Gaza, the head of Hamas abroad, Khaled Mashaal, was filmed attending a wedding in Qatar.
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Kan news reported that some Palestinians expressed anger at Mashaal on social media, questioning his decision to celebrate while fighting was ongoing in the Strip.
According to IDF data, Palestinian terrorists launched 1,468 rockets and mortars at Israel during the five-day conflict.
The military said that 290 of the rockets, about 20 percent, fell short in the Gaza Strip, and another 39 landed in the sea, with the remaining 1,139 rockets crossing the border to Israel.
The Iron Dome air defense system intercepted around 430 rockets, marking a 95% interception rate of projectiles headed for populated areas. Two rockets were also intercepted by David’s Sling, the system’s first successful operational use.
Inga Avramyan, 80, was killed when a missile slammed into her apartment on Thursday in the city of Rehovot before she and her disabled husband managed to seek shelter. The IDF said the Iron Dome suffered a “technical fault,” which prevented the rocket from being intercepted.
Palestinian laborer Abdullah Abu Jaba, from Gaza, was killed on Saturday when a rocket fired from Gaza hit an agricultural building site near the southern border town of Shokeda. The Iron Dome does not intercept rockets heading for unpopulated areas, and IDF regulations barred people from working in places without air raid sirens and adequate bomb shelters.
The IDF said it killed a total of 21 terror operatives during the fighting. The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza reported 33 deaths during the fighting. The IDF said at least four civilians were likely killed by failed Gazan rockets, and a number were killed during the initial IDF strikes of the operation early Tuesday morning, targeting senior Islamic Jihad members.
Emanuel Fabian contributed to this report.