Israel stopped in its tracks a plot by Hamas, led by jailed terrorists, to kidnap Israelis, the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) announced Wednesday after lifting a gag order.
Three prisoners, recruited by the Holy Warriors Brigade linked with Hamas, confessed to the plot, which was in its initial stages when it was broken up last month. The jailed terrorist who led the attempt to create the gang was identified as Mohammed Bal, 24, of Gaza, who was in constant communication with a Gaza terrorist who worked with Hamas.
Acting as a front group for the Brigade, Hamas could pretend it is observing, more or less, a ceasefire with Israel. In effect, Hamas simply was operating under another name.
Bal allegedly recruited 21-year-old Ali Harub, from the Dura village southwest of Hebron, and 53-year-old Rajab al-Din of the Ramallah-area village of Hamza. Both terrorists are serving time for making firebombs and for trying to kidnap Jews.
The Holy Warriors Brigade split from the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, the terror arm of the Fatah movement led by Mahmoud Abbas, according to the Shin Bet. The Brigade’s terrorists were involved in attacks on Israeli soldiers, including sniper fire and placing bombs at the Gaza security fence patrol road. Hamas financed and trained the Holy Warriors Brigade.
The discovery of the attempted plot exposed the intentions of Hamas “to expand its operations to Judea and Samaria on behalf of Hamas,” security officials added.
Abbas has said that even though Israel has agreed to free 104 terrorists and security prisoner under U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s initiative to resume talks between the Palestinian Authority and Israel, he also demands that Israel free all PA prisoners before any final agreement on the establishment of a PA state.
Israel recently has given up on its previous routine of making terrorists, before they are released as part of a political deal, to sign a pledge that they will behave nicely and not return to terror.
The prisoners caught in the latest attempt, under the noses of prisoner guards, to set up a plot to kidnap Jews, precludes any ritual of having them sign a pledge for the simple reason that they cannot return to terror if they never left it.