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May 24, 2016 / 16 Iyar, 5776
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Israel Indicts Arab Citizen Who Joined Syrian Rebels

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Israeli authorities lifted a gag order Wednesday and revealed that an Arab citizen from northern Israel has been indicted for being in contact with rebels in Syria, an enemy country

A gag order on the arrest and indictment was lifted Wednesday, revealing that 26-year-old Abdel Qader Altallah from the village of Taibe in the Galilee was arrested last month. He is a pharmacy student in Jordan.

“Over the course of his studies, Altallah met Iraqi and Palestinian students who support the Salafist-Jihadist stream, which is the ideological platform for Al-Qaeda, and under their influence took up the Salafist ideology and became more religiously observant,” Shin Bet said.

The once rare phenomenon of Arabs with Israeli citizenship contacting enemy countries has become more common. Six years ago, then-Knesset Member Azmi Bishari fled the country after being indicted for aiding Hezbollah during the Second Lebanon War in 2006.

An Israeli court last month sentenced an Israeli Arab, also from Taibe, for contacting enemy agents. Three years ago, two other Arab citizens of Israel were arrested for being in contact with Hezbollah.

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