Israel-Palestine conflict: Senior Hamas commander killed in wartime operations

| Updated: 14 October, 2023 2:27 pm IST
Israel's ongoing conflict with Hamas has led to many developments in the realm of modern combat, one being the misinformation warfare

An Israeli military statement confirmed the death of a high-ranking Hamas military leader responsible for the group’s airborne operations in Gaza City due to Israeli airstrikes on Saturday.

Murad Abu Murad lost his life within the last 24 hours when military aircraft targeted a Hamas operational hub used by the group for its “airborne operations,” according to the military statement.

Since Hamas militants initiated their attack on Israel from the Gaza Strip this past Saturday, numerous lives have been lost, including Israelis, Palestinians, and people from other countries. A significant portion of the casualties comprises civilians, with numerous distressing accounts surfacing regarding the militants’ violent actions and the extensive military response it triggered.

Large numbers of Palestinian residents commenced evacuating their residences and relocating to the southern areas after the Israeli military issued comprehensive evacuation directives to nearly half of Gaza’s 2.3 million population on the preceding Friday, in anticipation of an imminent ground offensive.

The UN reported that the Israeli military had conveyed the directive that approximately 1.1 million Palestinians residing in northern Gaza were required to move to the southern areas within the following 24 hours. Despite this, Hamas encouraged residents to remain in their homes and resist the Israeli military’s evacuation order.

In Arabic, the Israel Defence Forces had conveyed to the residents in the northern Gaza Strip that they should use evacuation pathways to move to the southern portion of the enclave between 10 am and 4 pm.

The military message emphasised, “If you are concerned about your well-being and that of your family, please follow the instructions to head south.” Furthermore, it assured the residents that Hamas leaders have secured their safety and are seeking refuge from strikes in the area.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that his government is ready to employ “unprecedented” levels of force against Hamas, the group responsible for the death of 1,300 people in the recent weekend assault. Over 1,500 people in Gaza have lost their lives in response to the airstrikes.

President Joe Biden has likened Hamas to al-Qaeda, the terrorist organisation responsible for the 9/11 attacks, while reiterating the US’ support for Israel. Meanwhile, French President Emmanuel Macron has authorised the mobilisation of 7,000 troops to intensify security patrols.

This decision came in the wake of an Islamist attack that took place a day earlier, where a teacher was fatally stabbed in a school in the northern city of Arras. Following this incident, France elevated its security alert to the highest level.

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