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Italian Foreign Minister Massimo D'Alema termed the assassination of Imad Mughniyah "terror" in an interview to be published Friday in the popular Italian weekly L'espresso. He also said that Israeli assassinations of Hamas officials "serve as an alibi for terror."

Concerning Mughniyah's killing, "by my definition, the car bomb in the middle of Damascus was terror," he said.

Mughniyah, Hezbollah's chief operations officer, was responsible for attacks that killed hundreds of people around the world over the last quarter century.

D'Alema also termed Israeli assassinations of Hamas operatives in Gaza an "unacceptable practice."

"Targeted killings have not bolstered the West's image, and they serve as an alibi for terror," he said.