Photo Credit: IDF
Military investigator (illustration)

The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) in a joint operation with Israel Police recently arrested seven residents of Jaljulya, an Israeli-Arab town (pop. 10,000) in central Israel near Kfar Saba, on suspicion of trafficking in illegal war materiel. On Thursday, the State Attorney’s Office filed four indictments under anti-terrorism statutes in Central District Court against some of the suspects.

One of the principal suspects is Mahmoud Muhammad Abdul Karim Daoud, 21. During the investigation it became clear that as a result of his involvement in weapons trafficking Daoud had become aware of a terrorist attack being planned by two brothers from Jaljulya who were then arrested: Adam Ismail Muhammad Faki, 25, a known criminal, and Faras Ismail Muhammad Faki, 27, also a known criminal and ISIS supporter.

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It was learned that Adam Faki visited the Gaza Strip in December 2014 to attend a family wedding. During his visit he was recruited to Hamas by his half-brother Muhammad – a Hamas member who resides in the Gaza Strip – and another Gaza-based Hamas member, Hassan Amatzi, and underwent military training, including shooting.

Senior Hamas member Hassan Jabari, the brother of the head of the Hamas military wing Ahmed Jabari (killed in the 2012 Operation Protective Edge), also participating in this training.

In April 2017, Adam Faki was asked by his half-brother Muhammad to advance an attack on an Israeli officer in revenge for the March 2017 assassination of senior Gaza Strip-based Hamas member Mazan Fakha. To this end, Faki was asked by his half-brother to purchase weapons, select a target and recruit another man to assist him in carrying out the attack. Faki then contacted Jaljulya resident Yassin Ma’ari and attempted to buy from him two pistols and a silencer for use in the planned attack.

Yet another brother, Faras Faki, was arrested on suspicion of being aware of the planning and aiding Muhammad Faki in creating a secret channel of communications to Adam via his cellphone.

The episode underscores the growing links between the criminal and terrorist worlds in the Israeli Arab community, specifically the transfer of war materiel from criminals to terrorists. This link constitutes a tangible danger.

The above also underscores how Hamas exploits Israel’s humanitarian policy on the Gaza Strip, including exploiting family visits, medical treatment and commerce for terrorist purposes.

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