Israel takes down the first female official of Hamas

The Israeli army killed Ms. al-Shanti, the first female official elected to a political office of Hamas, in today’s airstrike.

Hamas Radio in the Gaza Strip reported on October 19 that Jamila al-Shanti, the group’s first female official, was one of those killed in an Israeli airstrike early this morning, but did not provide Details about the location of the attack.

Ms. al-Shanti, 68 years old, is the wife of Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi, founder and leader of Hamas, before being killed in a Hellfire missile strike by the Israeli air force in April 2004.

She then continued to join the Hamas movement and, in 2021, became the first woman elected to political office, the group’s highest decision-making body.

Since the start of the offensive campaign in response to the October 7 attack by Hamas, the Israeli military (IDF) has continuously launched airstrikes targeting the group’s leaders, senior commanders, and other members of the armed group organization in Gaza.

On October 19, the IDF announced the defeat of Rafat Abu Hilal, leader of the People’s Resistance Council, the third largest armed group in the Gaza Strip after Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group. The raid occurred after the IDF received intelligence information from the Shin Bet security agency.

The IDF also raided the locations of several members of the Nukhba commando unit of Hamas who participated in a coordinated attack campaign on Israel. More than 10 Nukhba commando members died in the above raids.

The Israeli army also destroyed hundreds of Hamas strongholds in the past 24 hours, including anti-tank missile launch sites, tunnels, intelligence facilities and the group’s command headquarters.

Hamas launched a coordinated attack campaign by land, air and sea against Israel on October 7, killing thousands of people. Israel then blockaded the Gaza Strip and launched retaliatory raids, sending tanks and infantry to carry out a number of local attacks in the area.

Israel has repeatedly vowed to “eliminate Hamas and its military capabilities.” The United Nations and leaders of many countries warn that a large-scale ground offensive against the Gaza Strip could worsen the humanitarian crisis in the area blockaded by Israel in recent days.