Hamas: Israel Attempted to Assassinate Military Chief in Gaza City

Mohammed Deif's wife and young child were killed in Tuesday attack, Hamas officials say; no official confirmation from Israel.

Site of Gaza City home destroyed August 19, 2014. Reported attempt to assassinate Mohammed Deif.
Aftermath of failed Israeli attempt to assassinate Hamas military leader Mohammed Deif in Gaza, August, 19, 2014; now he leads opposition to truce. AFP

Israel attempted to assassinate Mohammed Deif, the head of Hamas' military wing, in Gaza City on Tuesday, Hamas officials said.

Israel has not officially commented on the report.

Deif's wife and young child were killed in an Israeli air strike, the Hamas officials said. Hamas has not issued a statement on whether Deif was killed, and Israeli sources speculated Wednesday that he likely survived.

Hamas officials said the assassination attempt represented an Israeli violation of the cease-fire, but Israel says its air strikes came in response to rockets fired from Gaza while the truce was still in effect on Tuesday.