Lebanese Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah with Kuntar at a stadium in Beirut’s southern suburbs. AFP PHOTO/MUSSA AL-HUSSEINI
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Commander falls after dedicating life to fighting IsraelMinutes after he was released from Israeli prison in July 2008, Samir Kuntar pledged to carry on resisting Israel. In 1978, Kuntar and three others attempted to hijack an Israeli bus in order to exchange its occupants with prisoners in Israeli jails.Ever the revolutionary, Kuntar grew restless and planned another operation. On April 22, 1979, Kuntar and a handful of resistance fighters sneaked into Israel in the dead of night. While Israel claims Kuntar killed Einat, he constantly denied it. In 1980 Kuntar was sentenced by an Israeli court to five consecutive life sentences in addition to 47 years in jail. Following Israel's 2006 war against Lebanon, Kuntar's release was secured. The war, which broke out after Hezbollah kidnapped two Israeli soldiers to swap them with Kuntar, killed 1,200 Lebanese civilians. Kuntar was also charged with helping to establish the Syrian resistance against Israel in the Golan Heights, a Druze majority area.
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