Israeli aircraft attacks militant's house in Rafah

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A series of explosions today shook the house of a top Islamic Jihad leader in the southern Gaza town of Rafah, wounding five people, according to witnesses and hospital officials.

Witnesses said a missile from an Israeli aircraft hit the house, setting off a series of explosions inside. The Israeli army said it was unaware of any Israeli military activity in the area.

The blasts wounded five people, two critically, hospital officials said.

The house belonged to local Islamic Jihad leader Mohammed Sheikh Khalil, who was not at home at the time, Islamic Jihad leaders said.

"Sheikh Khalil is in good shape ... and he will remain a thorn in the throat of the Jews and will teach them a lesson as he has done before," said local Islamic Jihad spokesman Abu Abdel Rahman.

Khalil had lost an arm in a previous attempt on his life and lost a leg in an accident while working with explosives.

Islamic Jihad said none of the wounded were militants.

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