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Report: Iran supplied Hamas with rockets

April 15, 2011 at 7:35 AM   |   Comments

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TEL AVIV, Israel, April 15 (UPI) -- Iran provided Hamas with missiles broken down in parts so they could be smuggled via tunnels into the Gaza Strip, a leaked document indicated Friday.

The document, leaked to Haaretz by WikiLeaks, was based on a conversation in February 2009 between former Israeli army Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Harel and then-U.S. Ambassador to Israel James Cunningham, the newspaper said.

Harel told Cunningham Chinese and Iranian made rockets with a range of as much as 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) were in Hamas hands and had been specifically designed for Hamas use "as it came in four pieces that could fit through narrow tunnels and be reassembled in Gaza."

He also said, according to Israeli intelligence, Iran was constructing additional missiles based on the Fajr rocket that would have a range of more than 40 kilometers (24.8 miles), the paper said.

Harel, who has since retired from the army, also discussed the Katyusha and Grad rockets being sent to Hamas, the report says.

"Harel also stated that sophisticated anti-tank guided missiles were found in Gaza, to include the Russian-made Konkours system. Hamas also had SA-7 surface-to-air missiles and sophisticated improvised explosive devices of all varieties," the newspaper quoted the report as saying.

Harel asked the United States to urge Egypt to take steps to thwart the weapons smuggling, the report said.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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