Hundreds mourn deputy Hamas leader at funeral in Beirut

Hundreds mourn deputy Hamas leader at funeral in Beirut

Hundreds of people attended the funeral in Beirut on Thursday for Saleh al-Arli, Hamas number two, who was killed in an attack on Lebanon blamed on Israel.

Calling on Hamas to avenge his death and the killings of five other Palestinian militants on Tuesday, mourners gathered at a mosque to recite prayers for the dead before heading to Shatila refugee camp, where three of them will be buried. Marched.

The coffins of Aluri, Azzam al-Aqraa of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, and Mohammad al-Raith were draped with Palestinian and Hamas flags.

A machine gun was placed over each coffin, heavy gunfire rang out as the funeral procession made its way to the cemetery, and mourners waving Palestinian flags and flags of the Islamic ally Hamas chanted “Allahu Akbar”. The chorus was drowned out. Jihad.

“Abu Obeida, bomb Tel Aviv,” mourners chanted, addressing Hamas' military wing's Gaza spokesman by name Deguerre.

Aruri and six other Hamas members were killed in an attack on the Iranian-backed militant group Hezbollah's headquarters in southern Beirut.

Hamas and Lebanese security officials blamed Israel for launching the attack, and a senior Lebanese security official said he was targeted by guided missiles.

A US defense official told AFP on Wednesday that Israel was behind the attack. Israel does not claim any responsibility.

Mr. Aruri is the most senior Hamas figure to be killed since the Israeli-Hamas war broke out on October 7, after Hamas attacked Israel.

“The assassination of Saleh al-Arli and other Palestinians is a failure because the resistance will continue to produce new leaders,” Oman Ghanum, one of the mourners, told AFP. he said.

The 35-year-old Palestinian said he wanted to take part in the funeral procession “to condemn the ongoing genocide in Gaza and Israel's violation of Lebanon's sovereignty.”

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah warned Israel against starting a war in Lebanon in a speech on Wednesday, vowing that the group would fight back without restraint.

Several Hamas members in exile reside in Lebanon under the protection of Hezbollah.

Israel vowed to “destroy” Hamas after the unprecedented attack on October 7, which killed around 1,140 people inside Israel, according to an AFP tally based on official figures.

Israeli military attacks on Gaza have left 22,438 people dead, most of them women and children, according to figures later provided by the Hamas-controlled area's health ministry.

Since the war began, there have been almost daily gun battles between Israel and Hezbollah in the border area.

Tuesday's attack that killed Aruri was the first in the Lebanese capital since fighting began.


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