A commander who keeps a low profile: who is the senior Hamas official who stayed with Issa during the assassination attempt?

The focus of attention yesterday (Monday) was occupied by the possibility that the deputy of the military wing of Hamas, Marwan Issa, was eliminated in an attack on an underground compound at the weekend. However, the senior member of the terrorist organization who stayed with him, Razi Abu Tamaa, is a significant factor in his own right.

At least in the past, Razi Abu Tama’a served as the commander of the military arm “Ezz ad-Din Al-Qassem Brigades” in the refugee camps in the center of the Gaza Strip. That is, he commanded four battalions of terrorists in the camps, two of which have already been disbanded. According to the IDF spokesman, he was also responsible for all of Hamas’s weapons in the Gaza Strip. Unlike other Hamas officials, Abu Tama’a keeps an extremely low public profile and there are no pictures of him in the media.

Weapons located by the battle team in the Zeytun neighborhood, Photo: IDF spokesman

But how did Razi Abu Tama’a even become the commander of the camps? Well, in 2008 Egypt arrested Ayman Nofal, commander of the center camp in Hamas, who was traveling with his companions in the border area between the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula. He sat in the Egyptian prison until January 2011 – then he managed to be released under the auspices of the “Arab Spring” riots.

During this period, Abu Tamaa stepped into his shoes as the commander of the camps. When Nofal returned to the Strip, he had a conflict with Abu Tamaa due to a power struggle and his desire to return to his previous position. It so happened that in 2015, a Palestinian source revealed to the Egyptian press that the military council tried to please Nofal – and appointed him to be a member of it. A kind of initial consolation prize alongside his role as a coordinator between the terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip.

Had a dispute with Abu Tamaa, senior member of the Ayman Nofal military wing, Photo: Arab Networks

In light of the IDF spokesman’s statement, it can be estimated that Abu Tamaa was replaced again by Nofal at some point. However, with Nofal’s assassination at the beginning of the war in Gaza in October 2023, it is possible that he once again fulfilled his role as commander of the center camp.

According to intelligence information, on March 9, Abu Tamaa was in an underground complex in the Nusirat refugee camp, together with the deputy head of the military branch, Marwan Issa. The compound was attacked by fighter jets, but no confirmation has yet been received that the two senior officials were killed.

Aiming at Hamas,
Aiming at Hamas, photo: .

Special project: Behind the invasion on the seventh of October was a chain of commanders and leaders who bear responsibility for the events of the mass slaughter. Who was eliminated and who remained alive? You mean Hamas

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