Israeli and Hamas officials acknowledged Mahmoud Mabhouh, a senior Hamas figure assassinated in a Dubai, United Arab Emirates, hotel room, was pivotal to smuggling operations that brought anti-aircraft missiles and other weapons into the Gaza Strip under Hamas control. Israeli officials have not responded to Hamas' claims that Israel was behind the operative's death. Defense experts noted that though Hamas lacks the ability to strike back in a significant way abroad, the organization could likely depend on Hezbollah to take revenge against Israel for the assassination.

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