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January 22, 2017 / 24 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Negev. Bedouin’

Major Sting Operation Uncovers Terror Attack Plans in Northern Negev region

Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

Israeli security forces prevented a major terrorist attack in the northern Negev when they captured the members of an Israeli Arab terror cell last month, the General Security Service (Shin Bet) intelligence agency revealed on Tuesday.

Shin Bet agents and Israel Police forces captured two operatives in a joint operation carried out in the Negev region.

The terrorists were planning an attack against IDF soldiers, according to a statement by the Shin Bet, but there are other pieces in the puzzle not yet completely put into place.

Muhammad Masri, 37, of Be’er Sheva and Abdullah Abu Ayash, 26, were arrested by Shin Bet agents. During questioning one of the suspects revealed that Masri suggested carrying out a terror attack to avenge Israel’s ban on the northern branch of the Islamic Movement.

Abu Ayash agreed to the suggestion and the two planned the attack against IDF soldiers in three potential sites: the northern Negev cities of Dimona and Arad, and the Nevatim Air Base.

It is ironic that in all three of the target sites, the potential victims would inevitably include Negev Bedouin, Druze and Israeli Arab citizens, who live and own businesses in both cities, and are in all three places.

As part of the preparations for the attack, the operatives conducted a preliminary tour to gather information about the potential sites for their attack.

During the investigation, the forces also confiscated a Carl Gustav submachine gun and a large amount of hardware to be used for triggering explosives from a distance by one or both of the terrorists.

The leader of the terror cell, Muhammad Masri, has been employed for the past year as a deputy branch manager at the King Store Mashadawi” in Be’er Sheva, where Abdullah Abu Ayash was also employed. The two formed their relationship while working together at the store.

Masri has a long history of terrorist activity: He was released from prison just three years ago, in 2013, after serving a 12-year prison term for his involvement in planning a terrorist attack by the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades at a banquet hall in Herzliya.

While in prison, Masri developed a strong relationship with Hamas terrorists from Gaza, Judea and Samaria, including a friendship with senior Hamas leader Yechiyeh Sanwar. In the years following, Masri pledged his loyalty to the flag of the Islamic Movement in Israel, and took part in its activities.

In addition, three Israeli residents of Negev communities were also detained for questioning in connection with allegations of involvement in weapons sales and similar transactions with Masri and Abu Ayash.

Bakhar Abu Tuqfa, 21, and Rami Abu Tuqfa, 22, both residents of Segev Shalom; and and Mahmoud Abu Kaf, 26, a member of the Bedouin tribe of Daw’it, near Nevatim, were all taken into custody.

Preliminary investigation from questioning of these individuals revealed information about the involvement of other Negev residents in weapons trade and other criminal activities.

“Indictments are pending against Muhammad Masri and Abdullah Abu Ayash,” the Shin Bet said in its statement. “The investigation is continuing and more arrests are expected.”

Hana Levi Julian

Terror Attack Foiled By Alert Crossing Authority Guards

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

Defense Ministry Crossing Authority officials at the Jaba’a Crossing foiled a possible terror attack Friday night.

The guards discovered knives and bullets in the trunk of one vehicle during a routine search crossing, located between Beit Shemesh and Gush Etzion, in the Judea region.

Three Israeli Arab residents from the Negev Bedouin town of Lakiya were in the vehicle at the time.

Having discovered the knives and the ammunition, the Crossing Authority officials launched a more thorough search of the vehicle — and turned up three handguns, including Glock and FN models.

The weapons and ammunition were confiscated, and the three suspects were detained. They were turned over for questioning by Beit Shemesh police.

Hana Levi Julian

President Rivlin Visits Bereaved Family of Israeli Teen Killed on Israel-Egyptian Border

Friday, October 28th, 2016

President Reuven Rivlin paid a condolence visit on Thursday to the family of Nimer Abu Amar, the 15-year-old Bedouin teen who was killed by shots fired on the Israeli-Egyptian border.

“We are all citizens of the same country, we have come to share in your profound grief,” Rivlin said.

“We are all equal in this country and there is no difference between a child from Lakiya or from Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, or Haifa. The Ministry of Defense treats a child from Lakiya in exactly the same way as it would any other child, and we will check and follow closely after this tragic incident.”

Bassam Abu Amar, the bereaved father, told Rivlin that he was confident the ministry would “pursue justice and investigate the issue.” He added, however, “We are in great pain; we are mourning our firstborn.”

Nimer’s uncle, Fares Abu Amar said, “We have been working with the security establishment for generations, and we will continue to serve the country and work along the borders.” He expressed confidence that the Defense Ministry would investigate and “draw the necessary conclusions.

“Our child is yours as well as ours – there is no question about that.”

The President embraced the family upon leaving and promised that the relevant officials at the President’s Office will follow the investigation into the incident.

Hana Levi Julian

Bedouin Clan War in Kaseife Kills 2 in the Negev

Sunday, July 31st, 2016

Two Bedouin men were killed, and 15 more were wounded in clan wars on Road 31, at the Bedouin town of Kaseife in the Negev, on Saturday night.

According to police it appears that members of one of the families from the village purposely ran over members of the other family from the village.

The two dead men are from the Alamor clan.

Police arrived to break up the fighting. There were also reports of shots being fired.

It’s not yet known what previous affront initiated the clan war.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Be’er Sheva Central Bus Station Terrorist Buried Quietly

Sunday, December 20th, 2015

The terrorist who murdered two and wounded 10 others in his attack on October 18 at the central bus station in Be’er Sheva has been buried, quietly.

Al-Okabi was heavily guided by Hamas in carrying out the attack from start to finish, according to Israeli authorities. At the end, he was shot and killed by security personnel.

The full CCTV footage of the attack was eventually released by Israel Police.

The family of Muhannad al-Okabi was told Friday to prepare his grave but few other details were shared about when to expect the body.

Early Sunday morning, the terrorist was allowed to be buried, with specific conditions, in the cemetery of the Negev Bedouin town of Hura. The town is located on Highway 31, halfway between Arad and Be’er Sheva, close to the Shoqet Junction.

The funeral was small, brief, quiet and limited to close friends and family members, exactly as Israel Police instructed, in order to minimize any positive impact, praise or grandiosity resulting from the proceedings.

The burial was welcomed as the final page of a chapter to be closed by more than a few in a town where terrorist groups have taken hold, to the displeasure of an older generation that has formed strong bonds with Israeli society.

A rift has begun to develop, not only in Hura but in other Bedouin communities as well, where radical philosophies heard elsewhere are starting to clash with local attitudes and beliefs.

Hana Levi Julian

Murdered IDF Soldier to be Laid to Rest in Sdei Hemed

Monday, October 19th, 2015

The IDF Golani soldier murdered in Sunday night’s terror attack on the Be’er Sheva Central Bus Station has been identified as Sergeant Omri Levi, age 19 and a resident of Sdei Hemed.

Sergeant Levi was murdered when Muhaned al-Okabi, a resident of the nearby Negev Bedouin town of Hura, entered the bus station armed with a pistol, ammunition and a knife. Police have arrested a family member who is suspected of having aided and abetted al-Okabi in planning and carrying out the attack.

The terrorist shot and killed the young soldier, grabbed his M-16 rifle and began spraying the waiting passengers. His mother was raised in Gaza before marrying a man who is an Arab citizen of Israel — allowing her to remain on this side of the border. Other details remain under gag order.

IDF Corporal Omri Levi, posthumously promoted to the rank of Sergeant, will be laid to rest Monday afternoon at 4 pm in the cemetery of Sdei Hemed, an agricultural community near Kfar Saba.

Four other military personnel were wounded in the attack, including one who sustained serious injuries.

Hana Levi Julian

Negev Bedouin Resident of Hura was Terrorist Attacker in Be’er Sheva Central Bus Station

Monday, October 19th, 2015

The terrorist who carried out the deadly attack on the Be’er Sheva central bus station Sunday evening was a 21-year-old Israeli Arab resident of the nearby Bedouin town of Hura, police say.

The mother of Muhaned al-Okabi was raised in Gaza, but under Israeli law she was allowed to cross the border after marrying an Israeli Arab citizen. The couple settled in Hura.

The rest of the case remains under gag order.

The fact that a resident of a Negev Bedouin town has joined the ranks of the Palestinian Arab terrorists, however, is deeply troubling.

It’s a game-changer in terms of its implications for Jews living in southern Israel, particularly for those living in the northern and eastern sections of the Negev. This is where Jews and Bedouin live cheek-and-jowl together, and co-existence is a reality, not an abstract concept discussed over coffee or at a symposium.

“The revelation that Hura has turned the corner to join Hebron’s ‘terrorist central’ mentality is scary for Jews living in Meitar, Arad, and Omer, each just minutes away – let alone Be’er Sheva, the central hub where everyone passes through,” Natalie J., a resident of Arad, told JewishPress.com on Monday.

There are more than 250,000 Bedouin living in the Negev, a vast region that comprises approximately 60 percent of the state’s land.

That population outnumbers the Jewish population in the region, which is comprised mostly of immigrants who do not mind the inconvenience of inadequate transportation, lower salaries, and a lack of jobs and services.

Despite all of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s promises, those living on the periphery are still pioneers and face hardships others know little or nothing about. In the south, that complicates traumatic events even further, due to a lack of funding and resources.

Sunday’s attack by a local Bedouin may in fact represent a further risk to the Negev Jewish population. If so, it will require a defense plan similar to that being considered for Judea, Samaria and the integrated parts of northern, southern and eastern Jerusalem.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/negev-bedouin-resident-of-hura-was-terrorist-attacker-in-beer-sheva-central-bus-station/2015/10/19/

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