Eight Palestinians killed in two separate IAF strikes in Gaza
October 13, 2006
By Amos Harel, Mijal Grinberg and Yoav Stern, Haaretz Correspondents and Agencies
At least eight Palestinians were killed Thursday in two separate Israel Defense Forces operations in the Gaza Strip.
At least two Palestinians were killed and at least seven injured in an Israel Air Force missile strike on the Gaza City home of a Hamas leader Thursday night.
Earlier Thursday, six Palestinians were killed in a clash between the Israel Defense Forces and militants in southern Gaza.
An IDF spokesman confirmed the air strike targeted the house of a Hamas commander, Sharaf Farwana, in the Sajaiyeh section of Gaza City near the border with Israel.
The army said Farwana was involved in attacks against Israel and supplying weapons to Hamas militants.
Farwana survived the attack, but the strike killed his brother, 25-year-old Aiman Farwana, and a two-year-old girl.
Aiman Farwana was said to be tied to Hamas, the Associated Press reported.
A second air strike close to midnight Thursday targeted a metal workshop suspected of manufacturing weapons in the Zeitoun neighbourhood of Gaza City. No casualties were reported.
Shortly after the IAF strike, Palestinian gunners fired a Qassam rocket at Sderot. The rocket slammed into a electrical powerline and plunged the city into darkness.
There were no reported casualties and the Israel Electric Corporation was able to restore power quickly to much of the city. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the rocket strike.
Internal Palestinian violence continued in the Gaza Strip on Thursday. A Hamas militant identified as Majid Darbiya was gunned down in Beit Lahia by unknown assailants.
In Gaza City masked Palestinians through a grenade into a local radio station, lightly injuring four people and causing severe damage to the building, according to Israel Radio.
Hamas vows revenge
A spokesman for the Hamas military wing earlier on Thursday vowed the group would take harsh revenge for the IDF operation in Gaza, in which six people – including four militants – were killed.
Five of the dead were members of the same family.
“In light of the ugly crimes in Khan Yunis and the northern Gaza Strip, we will bombard and strike in every place, north and south. The response will be powerful and will cause the earth to tremble. The enemy must now wait patiently for our actions,” he said.
Witnesses and medics that said troops backed by helicopter gunships entered the village of Abassan, east of Khan Yunis, at dark, touching off clashes.
Of the five family members killed, three were armed militants of the ruling party’s militant wing. They were identified as Abed Rahman Kadiah, 25, Salah Kadiah, 25, and Naeel Kadiah, 22. The other two family members were bystanders, named as Adal Kadiah, 40, and his 13-year-old son Suhaib Kadiah.
The fourth militant, Mohammed Barakha, 23, was killed later Thursday as clashes raged into the afternoon. IDF troops opened fire on Barakha as he advanced toward them under cover of a large crowd.
The IDF confirmed its forces were operating in the area looking for facilities used by militants. Troops fired on gunmen who tried to attack them, an army spokesman said. At least 11 Palestinians were wounded in the clashes.
“This is an area believed to conceal tunnels and other forms of infrastructure used by terrorist groups,” he said.
Militants fired anti-tanks missiles at troops raiding the area, but there were no casualties among the soldiers.
Earlier Thursday, the Israel Air Force destroyed the house of a Hamas militant in the Jabalya refugee camp, which the IDF said was being used as a storehouse for weapons.
Also Thursday, two Qassam rockets fired by Palestinians in the Gaza Strip landed in open fields in the western Negev. There were no injuries in either incident, but some farmland was destroyed in one of the blasts.
In overnight raids in the West Bank early Thursday, IDF troops arrested 12 wanted militants. Troops came under explosives and gunfire while operating in Nablus and Tul Karm. There were no soldier casualties in either incident. A Palestinian was wounded during the Nablus operation, but his condition has not yet been confirmed.