A Palestinian inside Haifa's District Court on Feb. 6, charged with being part of a Hamas terror cell plannning to attack an army base and a train station. (Flash90) (Flash90)
Hamas terrorist in Haifa court

The Israel Security Agency, in cooperation with the IDF and the Israel Police, uncovered several Hamas cells in Judea and Samaria in recent weeks.

In February, the Israel Security Agency (ISA, or Shin Bet) and the IDF arrested several students from Birzeit University, near Ramallah, who were active in a Hamas-affiliated Islamist cell pursuant to Hamas’s efforts to establish itself on the ground. To this end, the students – inter alia – received funds from sources within the terrorist organization. An ISA investigation revealed significant activity at – and beyond – Birzeit University.

Also recently, members of a Hamas cell that carried out extensive terrorist activities in the Har Adar-Maaleh Hahamisha area, near Jerusalem, were arrested. An ISA investigation revealed that the cell members– residents of Bidu, in the Binyamin area – planted IEDs and threw firebombs at IDF units nearby and were involved in shooting at Har Adar in 2015. They were also planning more shooting attacks.

In Samaria, a joint ISA-IDF operation led to the arrest of Hamas terrorist Muhammad Azi, 20, from Jamain. An ISA investigation revealed that he was planning to carry out an attack against Israeli targets in cooperation with Nur Aldin Ghait, 22, from Hebron, who was also arrested.

Azi and Ghait were planning to carry out a shooting attack against civilian and IDF vehicles on main roads in the area. They had carried out surveillance and placed obstacles on the roads that would cause vehicles to slow down and become vulnerable to attack. A weapon was seized from Azi during the investigation.

They had also produced IEDs to throw at Israeli targets and carried out several tests prior to the arrest. They were also planning to plant gas balloons at the entrance to a village in order to detonate them against an IDF vehicle.

All suspects were all recently indicted in the military courts.

This information is “in the context of ongoing counterterrorist operations in Judea and Samaria,” the Israel Government Press Office stated. “The ISA, IDF and Israel Police will continue their preventive operations against the various terrorist organizations.”

By: United with Israel Staff
(With files from the Israel Government Press Office)