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Gaza leader dies in air strike

14 October 2012, 14:33

Gaza City - A leader of a hardline Islamist group that has claimed a spate of rocket attacks on Israel in recent days was among three Palestinians killed in Israeli air strikes on Gaza, sources on both sides said on Sunday.

Sheikh Hisham al-Saedini, 43, also known as Abu al-Waleed al-Maqdisi, one of the founding members of Salafist group the Mujahedeen Shura Council, was killed in a strike late on Saturday on the north Gaza town of Jabaliya, Palestinian security sources said.

Fellow Salafist militant Fayek Abu Jazar, 42, died with him as they rode a motorbike. Two other people, one of them a 12-year-old boy, were wounded.

A second air strike early on Sunday killed Yasser Mohammad al-Atal, 23, of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the sources said. One other person was wounded.

An Israeli military statement said that its "aircraft targeted a terrorist squad in the southern Gaza Strip in its final preparations to fire rockets at Israel. A hit was confirmed."

The strike came hours after Gaza militants fired a rocket that exploded in an open field in the Eshkol region of southern Israel, a military spokesperson said.



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