The Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades’ said they would counterattack “as soon as possible the crimes of the Zionist occupation”, in a statement on Monday.

Israel has stepped up attacks against Palestinian resistance fighters struggling against the Jewish state’s illegal occupation.

An Apache helicopter fired missiles late on Sunday at a car in the occupied Gaza Strip, carrying Palestinian activists, killing all four. Some of those killed were decapitated and their bodies burnt beyond recognition, according to medical sources.

Last Thursday Israel assassinated Hamas leader Ismail Abu Shanab in a missile  strike, effectively leaving a Palestinian-declared truce to temporarily halt resistance attacks, dead.