The Israel Security Agency (ISA), in cooperation with the Israel Police, on February 7, 2017, arrested Valentin Vladimir Mazalevsky, 40, an Israeli citizen who resides in Shibli–Umm al-Ghanam, an Arab town at the foot of Mount Tabor in Israel’s North, married and the father of five, based on intelligence suggesting that he had tried recently to go to Syria in order to join the fighting as a member of Islamic State.
Mazalevsky immigrated to Israel from Belarus in 1996 and converted to Islam in 2000 during his military service, after having met his wife, a resident of Shibli.
The ISA investigation has revealed that Mazalevsky supports the Islamic State and purchased a one-way ticket to Turkey in order to cross the border into Syria and join organization as a fighter. Mazalevsky was active in an online Islamic State support group, which coordinated his trip to Syria.
The ISA views the departure of Israelis to Syria and Iraq as a very dangerous phenomenon. The Islamic State disseminates deceptive photographs to the effect that a good and respectable life is possible under its rule and that those who join the fighting will enjoy religious and military adventure. However, interrogation of Israelis who have returned from Syria and Iraq has shown the opposite, namely harsh conditions under constant threat.
The ISA views Islamic State supporters in Israel as a severe security threat and will continue to use all counter-terrorist and preventive means at its disposal. The ISA will deal with those involved to the fullest extent of the law.
The State Attorney’s Office on Wednesday filed a serious indictment against Mazalevsky in the Nazareth District Court.