Mohammed Deif

Mohammed Deif (محمّد الضيف), born Mohammed Diab al Masri in Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip in 1965, is a founding member and commander of Hamas‘s Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades. He became head of Hamas’ armed wing in July 2002 after Israel assassinated its former leader Salah Shehada.

Deif has survived multiple Israeli assassination attempts, two of which left him seriously injured. While recovering from his injuries, Deif was temporarily replaced as head of the al-Qassam Brigades by Ahmad Jaabari, who was assassinated by Israel in November 2012. At the time, Jaabari was reportedly contemplating a permanent truce with Israel.

During the 2014 war, an attempted assassination by Israel killed Deif’s wife and two of his children, and injured other family members.

Deif is listed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) by the US Department of State.