Sunday, March 3, 2024

Israel assassinates top Hamas leader Saleh al-Arouri in Lebanon’s Beirut

Israel has assassinated Hamas deputy leader Saleh al-Arouri in a drone attack in Lebanon’s Beirut on Tuesday evening. Several people are killed in the attack that also targeted Hamas office.

Dahyia, where the explosion took place, is a residential area but also home to many members of the Lebanese armed movement Hezbollah, which is an ally of Hamas.

The Secretary-General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, had affirmed in several statements that any assassination of any figure on Lebanese soil would alter the equation of the response maintained between Hezbollah and Israel.

The Israeli assassination of Hamas’ vice president Arouri is considered a significant Israeli escalation on the Lebanese front.

Hamas said two other Qassam Brigade commanders were also killed.

Who is Saleh al-Arouri?

Arouri was a founding member of Qassam Brigade, the armed wing of Hamas. Born in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank in 1966, he had long been living in exile in Lebanon after spending 15 years in Israeli jail.

In recent weeks, he acted as a spokesperson for Hamas and its strategy in the war in Gaza.

The US government designated him as a “global terrorist” in 2015 and put out a $5m reward for information on him.

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