Israel’s combined security forces have recently exposed and busted a Hamas espionage network operating inside Israel, the Shin Bet (Israel’s Security Agency) revealed Monday.
The investigation discovered that Hamas operative in the Gaza Strip recruited Israeli citizens who have family in the Gaza Strip for the purpose of gathering military intelligence in Israel to be used for terrorism against Israeli targets.
The Hamas-run spy ring took advantage of the fact that the Israeli civilians it recruited could enter the Gaza Strip to visit their family.
The Shin Bet arrested Israeli citizens Rami Amudi and Rajab Dacha at the beginning of January.
Amudi, 30 and originally a resident of Khan Yunis in Gaza, has been living in Tel Aviv since November 2019, the son of a Jewish Israeli mother and an Arab father from Gaza and who grew up in Gaza Strip with his father’s family.
About two years ago, the relationship between him and his Israeli mother was renewed, and in recent months Amudi worked with his mother to receive Israeli documentation and moved to live with her in Israel.
Dacha, 34 and originally a resident of Gaza whose mother is an Israeli living in Lod, has lived all his life in Gaza. In 2017 he worked to obtain an Israeli passport using his mother’s citizenship and moved to Israel, leaving behind his wife and five children in Gaza, whom he visited every few months.
The Shin Bet’s interrogations revealed that the two were recruited in a similar fashion by Hamas personnel while in the Gaza Strip.
The two were asked by Hamas to purchase Israeli cell phones and SIM cards to maintain a secret line of communication with the terror organization.
Dacha’s investigation revealed that he had carried out missions ordered by Hamas and had photographed various security facilities in the central area, including military bases, police facilities, Iron Dome deployment sites.
He was further asked to deliver locations for missile attacks used during a recent round of attacks on Israel.
The Shin Bet also exposed the Hamas handler who ran the ring – a 32-year-old from Beit Lahiya.
Amudi and Dacha were indicted on Monday in the Central District Court and were charged with serious security offenses.
“Hamas in the Gaza Strip continues to cynically exploit the Erez Crossing between the Strip and Israel in favor of promoting terrorism in Israel,” the Shin Bet stated.
Israel has previously exposed several cases in which Hamas has utilized Israel’s humanitarian permits for promoting terrorism.
The Shin Bet “views with severity the exploiting Israeli civilians who have access to the Gaza Strip and Israel in favor of promoting terrorist activities” and will continue “to work with its Israeli police partners to monitor and thwart any hostile espionage activities by terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip,” it stated.