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Israeli strike kills senior Hamas official in Beirut: Reports

Israeli strike kills senior Hamas official in Beirut: Reports

by host

A strike apparently carried out by Israel on Tuesday killed Saleh al-Arouri, a senior official of the Palestinian militant group Hamas in Beirut, according to Hamas and Hezbollah officials cited on Lebanese state-run media and Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV and according to U.S. officials cited in U.S. media outlets.

Al-Arouri was a senior official for Hamas in its political bureau and a commander within its military wing.

Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister, Najib Mikati, condemned the attack on the state-run National News Agency. “This explosion is a new Israeli crime aimed at inevitably dragging Lebanon into a new phase of confrontation,” he said, “following the daily ongoing assaults in the South, resulting in a significant number of martyrs and wounded individuals.”

French President Emmanuel Macron called on Israel to avoid further escalation of the conflict, “particularly in Lebanon,” according to AFP. Macron delivered the message by telephone to Israeli war Cabinet member Benny Gantz.

According to Hezbollah’s television channel, the alleged drone strike took place in Beirut’s southern suburb of Dahiyeh, a Hezbollah stronghold. U.S. officials have expressed concern to Israel in recent weeks about its escalating military action north of its border in Lebanon, according to U.S. media reports. Strikes and counterstrikes between Israel and Lebanon have continued for weeks as a backdrop to Israel’s airstrikes and ground operation in Gaza.

According to the Washington Post, a U.S. defense official claimed Israel was responsible for the attack, adding that an assessment of al-Arouri’s killing was ongoing.

Danny Danon, a member of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party, congratulated Israel on killing al-Arouri, saying: “Anyone who was involved in the 7/10 massacre should know that we will reach out to them and close an account with them.”

Israel has not officially commented on al-Arouri’s assassination or claimed responsibility for the attack.

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