Shin Bet arrests two West Bank terror cells planning to abduct Israelis (HAŽARETZ NEWS) By Gili Cohen 05/24/12)
HA'ARETZ} NEWS SERVICE
HA'ARETZ} NEWS SERVICE Articles-Index-Top
Israel´s security forces have arrested operatives of a Hamas
terrorist cell in the city of Hebron, suspected of planning to abduct
Israelis in the nearby settlement of Kiryat Arba.
The cell members were arrested in the past few weeks, but a gag order
on the case was lifted only on Wednesday.
The Israel Defense Force and Shin Bet recently uncovered a number of
terrorist cells in the Hebron area. One of the cells, led by Ma´ataz
Qawasmeh, was preparing to abduct Israelis in Kiryat Arba.
Qawasmah, a Hamas operative, served time in Israeli prison for his
involvement in the Islamic organization. His brother was exiled to
Gaza, as part of the prisoner exchange deal between Israel and Hamas
that included the release of abducted IDF soldier Gilad Shalit.
Qawasmah and two other operatives confessed to using improvised
explosive charges near the fence surrounding Kiryat Arba, in order to
examine the army´s response. The squad members planned to penetrate
the settlement and try and abduct an Israeli settler, or if
unsuccessful, kill him.
The three were indicted two weeks ago in the Judea Military Court on
several charges, including intentional attempted killing, the
manufacture and tossing of a flammable object, planting explosives
and membership in an illegal organization.
On Wednesday, it was also made public that the IDF and Shin Bet
uncovered another terrorist cell operating in the village of Yata,
near Hebron in the West Bank. The cell used mobile phones to initiate
Two members of the squad were arrested following a failed bomb attack
that took place in April 19. The two are 26 year-old residents of
Yata, Ta´ar Daud, who confessed to manufacturing and placing the
explosives, and Mohand Mahamra, considered to be a member of Fatah
who also confessed to his actions.
Daud and Mahamra confessed that they carried out another bomb attack
in 2007 and that they manufactured of explosive devices. The two were
indicted earlier this week in the Judea Military Court on charges
including the planting of a bomb, manufacturing explosives and
Recently, it was made public that two months ago Israel´s security
forces arrested a number of Palestinians suspected of attempting to
abduct Israelis in the West Bank. According to the Shin Bet, the
squad had nine operatives living in the area of Ramallah. Heading the
cell was 22-year-old Muhammad Ramdan, a resident of the West Bank
town of al-Bireh. Ramdan and another several squad members were
indicted two weeks ago.
The indictment said that the squad members attempted to abduct
Israelis on three different occasions, driving a rental car and
equipped with an electric taser, tear gas, clubs and a replica gun.
In all three tries, according to the indictment, squad members drove
to the Binyamin area of the West Bank in an attempt to stun Israeli
drivers and hide them in a cave or a safe house.
The Shin Bet noted that the squad was planning to film the kidnapping
and upload the video to the internet in order to pressure Israeli
authorities to negotiate for the release of the abductees. (©
Copyright 2012 Ha´aretz 05/24/12)
Return to Top
MATERIAL REPRODUCED FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY