The Shin Bet in collaboration with Israel Police a few weeks ago arrested Muhammad Nadir Makhajna, 20, a resident of Umm al-Fahm in central Israel, on suspicion of plotting an attack using an explosive device, after being recruited by Hamas. The suspect had communications media connected with the Gaza Strip.
Makhajna was indicted on May 5 on serious security crimes.
The Shin Bet investigation revealed that the suspect was recruited a few months ago by the military wing of Hamas in the Gaza Strip, to carry out an attack using an explosive device inside Israeli territory. He was initially driven by financial and psychological pressures to get closer to the ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood and later decided that he wanted to carry out Jihad.
Makhajna gathered information about possible locations where he would carry out an attack in Israel, with an emphasis on security sites and crowded places, and sent the information he gathered to Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
Eventually, according to the Shin Bet, he was instructed by Hamas to carry out an explosive attack on the 921 bus, in the Hadera area, which is not far from Umm al-Fahm, and took several steps to facilitate the attack before getting arrested. Line 921 is inter-city, connecting Haifa and Tel Aviv via downtown Hadera.
In January of this year, two Israeli Arab citizens from Mu’awiya, outside Haifa, were arrested after also being recruited by the Hamas in the Gaza Strip to carry out bomb attacks inside Israel. The Shin Bet now believes they were recruited by the same people who contacted Makhajna.
A source in the Shin Bet said: “This investigation once again reveals the efforts of Hamas to promote terrorist activity in the territories of Israel, while trying to publicly distance itself from this involvement, falsely claiming its desire to promote quiet in the Gaza Strip––and cynically exploiting Israeli citizens and recruiting them for terrorist activities.”