Tue, Feb 18, 2003
UAV Apparently Exploded In Car Trunk
At least six Palestinian Hamas operatives were
killed and two wounded in Gaza on Sunday when a pilotless drone
they were transporting blew up. Conflicting Palestinian reports say
an Israeli drone circling in the vicinity was the cause of the
blast, while others say the Palestinian device was booby-trapped
and prematurely detonated.
The Israel Defense Force (IDF) had no comment on the reports,
although Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz said the army would strike
back hard against the terror group after the landmine attack on
Saturday in which a four-man tank crew was killed. Hamas said in a
statement that the small plane was to be used in an attack in
Israeli military officials did say it appeared Hamas was getting
ready for a major strike against Israeli targets.
Where Did They Get A Drone?
Palestinian Media Watch, an Israeli organization
that monitors Arabic news and information broadcasts and journals,
said Palestinian television showed pictures of the blown out,
smoldering car trunk, complete with remnants of the UAV. However,
PMW reporters said Palestinians had placed several brand new toys
in the trunk of the burned-out vehicle, next to the wreckage of the
drone. PMW reported the effort, said to have been undertaken by
Hamas, was to deceive viewers into thinking the UAV was actually a
There was no indication from Israel of where the drone had come
from or how Hamas was planning to use it. There was also no
indication if Hamas had more UAVs. Israel has employed unmanned
reconnaisance aircraft since the 1967 War.
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