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Day 174: Israel announces elimination of senior Hamas military leader at Shifa hospital

IDF says more senior terror leaders are in Shifa, 'We will get them soon'

Announcement of Ra'ad Thabat's death. (Photo: IDF Spokesperson)

The IDF announced on Thursday evening that senior Hamas figure Ra'ad Thabat was killed by IDF troops operating in the area of Shifa Hospital in the central Gaza Strip earlier in the day. 

Thabat was among the top 10 senior figures in Hamas' military-terrorist wing and was considered close to Yahya Sinwar and Mohammed Deif, the two top Hamas leaders in Gaza. 

“He was the organization's knowledge center in everything related to equipping and arming. Ra'ad was in the top ten of the military wing. He is close to Sinwar, Mohammed Deif, and Issa,” said IDF Spokesman Brig.-Gen. Daniel Hagari in a statement.

Thabat was eliminated while attempting to escape together with two other terrorists into the Shifa Hospital plaza. Soldiers from the IDF's Shayetet 13, along with forces of the Nahal Reconnaissance Battalion, the Shaked Battalion and Duvdevan were involved in the operation.

Hagari noted that during a search by the Nahal Brigade patrol in Shifa's maternity ward compound, three terrorists were chased and eventually eliminated by the IDF troops. 

“The determination of the IDF and ISA forces on the basis of intelligence that is constantly being added proves itself. We have reached senior officials, and we will reach others. As for the intelligence that is being added, yesterday during interrogations inside the hospital, we interrogated a Hamas detainee. He directed us to an area of long-range rockets and our forces destroyed them,” the IDF spokesman said.

Hagari said that the IDF detained 950 suspects from Shifa Hospital, of whom 500 have been identified as Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorists. 

“There are other senior officials in the hospital, and we will reach them all,” Hagari stated. 

In southern Gaza, the Commando Brigade has been operating in the Al-Amal neighborhood. IDF soldiers of the brigade have been conducting targeted raids on terror infrastructure in cooperation with armored and engineering forces. 

Over the past couple of days, soldiers of the Maglan Commando Unit apprehended dozens of terrorists in the area who were transferred for interrogations by Unit 504 and the Israeli Securiy Agency (ISA or Shin Bet). In addition, the troops discovered hundreds of explosives and dozens of Kalashnikov-type weapons. 

Soldiers from the Paratroopers Reconnaissance Unit carried out a targeted raid on terrorist infrastructure located near the Al-Amal Hospital, where they discovered dozens of grenades, Kalashnikov-type rifles and other weapons. 

The IDF also destroyed a long tunnel system of 2.5 km (1.5 mi) which ran from the northern to southern sections of the Gaza Strip. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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