Top Hamas leader killed


(JTA) — A top Hamas leader was killed in an Israeli air force attack on his home.

Nizar Rayyan, whom the IDF spokesman called a senior Hamas terrorist operative, was in his apartment Thursday when it was blown up in an airstrike. The building was also used as a communications center and a tunnel was found under the home to help terrorists escape, the IDF said. Two of Rayyan’s wives and four of his children were also killed, according to Palestinian sources.

Rockets and other explosives stored in the building also blew up during the attack.

Rayyan was both a religious leader of the Hamas military wing and a military commander. He became Hamas’ top religious leader after the assassination of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin in 2004.

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