May 26, 2006

Islamic Jihad member killed in Lebanon car bomb

SIDON, Lebanon (Reuters) - A car bomb wounded a senior
Islamic Jihad official and killed his brother in the southern
Lebanese city of Sidon on Friday, Lebanese security sources and
officials of the Palestinian group said.

It was not immediately clear who targeted the official
Mahmoud Majzoub, known as Abu Hamze, and his brother Nidal --
also an Islamic Jihad member -- but an Israeli military source
said he was not aware of any involvement by Israel.

Islamic Jihad is the main Palestinian faction to defy a
15-month old truce with Israel, which it is committed to

Security sources said the explosion went off when the men,
who were in the same car, turned the ignition. The blast, near
the Abu Bakr mosque in Sidon, appeared to have been caused by a
bomb planted in the vehicle, they said.

Lebanese security sources earlier said that Abu Hamze
himself had been killed but later said his brother had died
while he sustained critical wounds.

"Mahmoud al-Majzoub was critically wounded. Authorities
told now us he is out of danger. But there was another martyr
who was killed," Islamic Jihad representative in Beirut Abu
Imad al-Rifai told Al Jazeera television.

Rifai said it was the second assassination attempt on
Majzoub, and blamed Israel for the blast.

Jihad has killed more than 30 people in suicide bombings
inside Israel since the start of a ceasefire which has been
observed by some other Palestinian militant groups, including
one that left 11 people dead in Tel Aviv on April 17.

Israeli forces have repeatedly targeted Islamic Jihad in
the Gaza Strip and occupied West Bank with deadly missile
strikes and arrest raids, prompting calls for revenge from the

(Additional reporting by Jerusalem bureau)