The leader of an al-Qaida-inspired group in the Gaza Strip revealed on Sunday that his men recently tried to assassinate former US president Jimmy Carter and Quartet Middle East envoy Tony Blair.
Taleb, who is wanted by Hamas's security forces, has been in hiding for more than two years. Several attempts by Hamas to arrest him have failed, prompting the movement to detain many of his friends and relatives.
A veteran journalist in the Gaza Strip described Taleb as the Palestinian Osama bin Laden. The journalist said that Taleb's group was seeking to establish an Islamic "emirate" in the Gaza Strip.
Last month, Hamas's security forces killed Abdel Latif Moussa, founder and head of a similar fundamentalist group called Jund Ansar Allah. Moussa was killed along with 30 other Palestinians, most of them his supporters, during a standoff in the southern city of Rafah in the Gaza Strip.
Hamas officials believe that Taleb's group, which is called Jaljalat (Thunder), was behind last week's bomb explosions outside two government-controlled security institutions in Gaza City. The attacks, they said, were apparently designed to avenge the crackdown on Jund Ansar Allah.
Gaza Strip sources said that Jaljalat consists of dozens of former Hamas militiamen who left because of their movement's move toward "moderation."