Hamas terror assets in Hebron were recently exposed in a joint IDF-GSS operation that was conducted over the past few months. The assets that were discovered represent an attempt by Hamas to establish local headquarters in Hebron. The terror cell included approximately 20 terrorists affiliated with Hamas who were planning a kidnapping attack. Most of the terrorists were already known to the security services.
The group includes:
- Nabil Taleb Mahmad Mahmmud Ouauda (32), a resident of Dura, who was previously jailed for involvement in terror activity and assisting suspects. Ouauda was the head of the terror infrastructure that was exposed.
- Mahmud Mahmad Mahmud Abu-varda (34) was previously jailed for involvement in terror activity. He was involved in the transferring of weaponry to other operatives.
- Tareq Aziz Issa Graib (35), resident of Tarqumia, was a contact for operatives abroad.
The investigation concluded that the terrorists were assisted by Hamas operatives abroad, receiving guidance and funding. The primary contact person abroad was Husam Badran, one of the prisoners released in the prisoner exchange that secured the release of IDF soldier Gilad Shalit. In 2004, Badran was sentenced to 17 years in jail for his involvement in the execution of terror attacks during the Second Intifada. Upon his release in October 2011, he was exiled to Qatar.
The investigation further reveals that the terrorists’ primary goal was to execute a kidnapping attack in order to bargain for the release of Arab prisoners. They had planned to use a hideout apartment, and have an Israeli citizen function as the driver during the kidnapping.
A variety of ammunition was discovered along with more than 10 different of weapons. The terrorists were indicted with the charges of weapon possession, contacting a hostile organization and conspiracy to kidnap an IDF soldier.