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Israel destroys Gaza headquarters of Hamas

Israel has destroyed the Gaza headquarters of the terrorist group Hamas. The Israeli Air Force (IAF) struck a number of targets in the Gaza Strip on Thursday that are critical for Hamas’ day-to-day functioning, including the terror group’s central bank, intelligence center, and their internal security headquarters.

The move came as Israel’s army gathered on Gaza’s border preparing to enter the terrorist enclave in an attempt to stop the massive rocket attack on Israel’s cities. Israelis of all faiths – Jew, Christian and Muslim – have spent five nights in bomb shelters since the first rocket attacks began on Sunday.

Dozens of Hamas operatives were reportedly inside the intelligence and security centers at the time of the bombings.

IDF spokesperson Hidai Zilberman said in a press conference that predawn airstrikes destroyed a Hamas bunker that had been built under a school and “in proximity to other civilian buildings.”

Airstrikes also destroyed the home of Iyad Tayeb, a high-ranking Hamas commander, and killed a squad of elite Hamas navy commandos. Along with Tayeb’s home, the IAF also destroyed four apartments that were reportedly used as “operational centers” directing rocket fire towards Israeli civilian targets.

Zilberman added that on Thursday alone, the IAF had thwarted four anti-tank missile attacks via targeted airstrikes.

On Tuesday, IAF airstrikes killed senior Hamas anti-tank missile commander Iyad Fathi Faik Sharir and Palestinian Islamic Jihad senior commanders Sameh Fahim Al-Mamlouk, Kamal Tayseer Qureiqa and Muhammad Yahya Abu Al-Ata.

The IAF is constantly destroying weapons caches belonging to the terror groups, Zilberman said, but the precise location of all caches isn’t known because they are spread throughout the Strip. However, he said he was confident the IAF had already hit the largest stockpiles.

“If there were any warehouses with 100 rockets, they were destroyed on the first day of the operation,” Zilberman said.

However, multiple barrages of hundreds of rockets launched by the terror group over the last three days casts doubt on Zilberman’s assertion.

Since clashes began on Monday, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad have fired some 1,400 rockets into Israel.

Rockets fired from Gaza have killed seven Israelis, including a 5-year-old boy, a father and daughter, and an Indian national who worked as a caregiver for the elderly.

The IAF has struck some 650 targets in Gaza, assassinating a number of high-ranking Hamas and Islamic Jihad figures as well as command posts and weapons manufacturing facilities.