A high-ranking member of the “Lion’s Den,” a relatively unheard-of Palestinian terrorist group, was killed over the weekend in an explosion that rocked the streets of the West Bank city of Nablus, Israel.
Some of the group’s members believe Tamer Kilani, a senior member, was assassinated in a state-sanctioned hit by the Israeli government, The Times of Israel reported. Kilani was killed Sunday after a bomb attached to what was described as a “motorcycle,” but looks like a moped, detonated.
The Lion’s Den reportedly released a statement regarding the attack in which they blamed Israel and threatened a “painful response” in retaliation. The group also urged Palestinians to attend Kilani’s funeral.
The funeral for Lions’ Den militant Tamer Kilani today in Nablus. Dozens of armed Palestinian, some with stolen weapons, “property of the US Army” pic.twitter.com/Gvwoaf8qCV
— Anna Ahronheim (@AAhronheim) October 23, 2022
🔴 Palestinian sources confirm the death of Tamer Kilani, a senior member of the Lion’s Den terror group, in an explosion last night in Nablus
The group blames Israel for the assassination and vows ‘painful response’
For more: https://t.co/0u8UqbIMI9
🎥 Bitachon Sade pic.twitter.com/Z0S6YCrEdX
— i24NEWS English (@i24NEWS_EN) October 23, 2022
Kilani’s death comes in the wake of an increased number of attacks perpetrated by Lion’s Den. The group has reportedly only been active since August.
Lion’s Den attacks, in recent weeks, have included shoot-outs, one of which reportedly claimed the life of an Israeli soldier. Another person in a separate attack sustained minor injuries. Though the attacks are not at the same level as those carried out by other terrorist groups, Lion’s Den leaders seem to focus on drawing support via social media.
The Times of Israel described the group as consisting primarily of “young, secular men, who eschew any proper hierarchy, unlike other armed factions in the West Bank.”
The Lion’s Den accused Israel of killing one of its fighters on SUN. Tamer Kilani, 33, is a father of two, he spent 5 years in Israeli jails and was killed in an explosion in Nablus. The cross-factional fighting group promised to reveal details of his killing and vowed revenge. pic.twitter.com/beWzI3q0Sh
— Rania Zabaneh (@RZabaneh) October 23, 2022
The outlet also noted that Lion’s Den terrorists operate in a traditionally different manner than other groups who wait for Israeli Defense Forces soldiers to come to them while conducting operations. Lion’s Den members reportedly take the opposite approach in that they slip into the city, carry out the attack and quickly retreat to safety.
It added that the tactics allow the small group to escape retaliation “unscathed, almost every time.”
People inspect a damaged motorcycle at the scene where Palestinian Den of Lions member Tamer Kilani was killed in an explosion, in Nablus in the Israeli-occupied West Bank October 23, 2022. REUTERS/Raneen Sawafta pic.twitter.com/zLJlmqrtDF
— Raneen Sawafta رنين صوافطه (@raneensawafta) October 23, 2022
Last week, it was revealed in a Haaretz report that Israel had denied entry permits to 164 family members of the members of Lion’s Den. In an announcement of the entry permit denial, which resulted from a security briefing held by Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, it was noted that 2,500 family members of Palestinians involved in attacks had been denied entry in 2022 alone.
The report added that members of Lion’s Den “are family members of Palestinian security service personnel, and used to serve in the Tanzim militia or other armed groups under the control of the Palestinian Authority and its security apparatus.”
IDF launched an anti-terror offensive earlier this year, netting thousands of arrests. Over 120 Palestinians have died as a result, and many of those, The Times of Israel noted, occurred during clashes with IDF forces.
Four IDF soldiers have been killed since launching the anti-terror offensive, either in attacks or during the operations.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.