In February, the ISA and the IDF arrested several students from Bir Zeit University who were active in a Haas-affiliated Islamist cell pursuant to Hamas's efforts to establish itself on the ground. To this end, they – inter alia – received funds the source of which was in a terrorist organization. An ISA investigation revealed significant activity at – and beyond – Bir Zeit University.
Also recently, members of a Hamas cell that carried out extensive terrorist activities in the Har Adar-Maaleh Hahamisha area.
An ISA investigation revealed that the members of the cell – residents of Bidu, in the Binyamin area – planted IEDs and threw firebombs at IDF units in the area, and were involved in shooting at Har Adar in 2015. It was also revealed that members of the cell planned to commit additional shooting attacks.
In Samaria, a joint ISA-IDF operation led to the arrest of Hamas militant Muhammad Azi, 20, from Jamain. An ISA investigation revealed that he was planning to carry out an attack against Israeli targets in cooperation with Nur Aldin Ghait, 22, from Hebron who was also arrested. It was learned that the two planned to carry out a shooting attack against civilian and IDF vehicles on main roads in the area.
Pursuant to the foregoing the two carried out surveillance on the roads and obtained bails to spread on the roads, thereby causing vehicles to slow down and become more vulnerable to attack. It is suspected that Azi acquired a weapon with which to carry out an attack. The weapon in question was seized during the investigation.
It was also learned that the two produced IEDs for throwing at Israeli targets and carried out several tests prior to their arrest. They also planned to plant gas balloons at the entrance to a village in order to detonate them against n IDF vehicle.
The aforesaid suspects have all recently been indicted in the military courts.
The above is in the context of ongoing counter-terrorist operations in Judea and Samaria. The ISA, IDF and Israel Police will continue their preventive operations against the various terrorist organizations.