Israeli military kills terrorist commander in Gaza strikes

Micaela Burrow, DCNF

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) struck targets believed to be part of the terrorist organization Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) in Gaza on Friday, killing one of the group’s senior commanders, the IDF claimed.

The IDF eliminated Tayseer Jabari, a senior commanding officer of the PIJ’s Northern Gaza Division, in the strikes, along with approximately ten other PIJ members accused of preparing to carry out attacks against Israeli military targets, according to a press release. Interim Prime Minister Yair Lapid and Defense Minister Benny Gantz said in a joint statement the operation, dubbed “Breaking Dawn,” was intended to destroy a “concrete threat” against Israeli citizens and weaken terrorists and their sponsors.

The Israeli government will not allow terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip to set the agenda in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip and threaten the citizens of the State of Israel. Anyone who tries to harm Israel should know: we will find you,” Lapid said in a statement.

The security forces will act against Islamic Jihad terrorists to eliminate the threat they pose to the citizens of Israel,” Lapid added.

Operation Breaking Dawn prevented a PIJ missile attack on Israeli citizens, according to the IDF.

IDF rockets hit a building called the Palestine Tower, CNN reported. The Palestinian health ministry said that the operation resulted in at least 9 dead, including a 5-year-old girl, and 55 injured.

“Our fight is not with the people of Gaza. Islamic Jihad is an Iranian proxy that wants to destroy the State of Israel and kill innocent Israelis,” the prime minister said in an emailed statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“The battlefield is open. … The resistance will respond with all force. We will not say how, but it is inevitable,” PIJ spokesman Daoud Shehab said, according to CNN.

Gantz called up 25,00 reservist forces amid threats of retaliation from PIJ and Hamas that set off alert sirens in several locations throughout Israel, The Jerusalem Post reported. Rockets were reportedly shot from Gaza into Israel after Breaking Dawn ended, but the Iron Dome intercepted them, according to The Jerusalem Post.

Hamas, the larger of the two militant terrorist groups operating in Gaza, condemned the IDF strikes, CNN reported.

The IDF did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment.

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