LONDON, March 25 (UPI) -- The new leader of the Palestinian militant group Hamas, Abdel Aziz Rantisi, says he would prefer to be assassinated than die of natural causes.
Rantisi was elected in a secret meeting to replace Sheik Ahmed Yassin, who was killed in an Israeli helicopter rocket attack Monday, and is aware Israel has vowed to continue hunting down Hamas members.
"I am not afraid because I believe every human being will die," Rantisi told ABC News. "It's the end for every human being."
Rantissi has vowed retaliation for the killing of Yassin, but narrowed threats against the United States.
"We will not target any American targets and we will continue our resistance just inside our country Palestine," he said.
In the interview, he denied speculation Hamas would establish ties with al-Qaida to strengthen Hamas' force factor.
"We don't have any kind of relations with al-Qaida and we have different goals because we are fighting different occupiers," he said.