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Israel jails Palestinian engineer for designing Hamas rockets

An Israeli court sentences a Palestinian engineer to 21 years in jail for helping the Islamist movement Hamas to improve the range of rockets used against the Jewish state.

Dirar Abu Sisi went missing in Ukraine in February 2011, and Israel said a month later that he was in its custody and would be put on trial.

A court in the southern city of Beersheba convicted Abu Sisi of several “crimes against the security of the state,” an official said.

In particular, he was said to have helped improve the range of the home-made Qassam rockets that the armed wing of the Islamist movement Hamas has repeatedly fired at Israel from the neighboring Gaza Strip over the years.

The rockets, produced in clandestine workshops that are often targeted by Israeli air strikes, can travel between 10 and 20 kilometres (six and 12 miles).

–AFP

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