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August 5, 2014 3:02 pm

Israel Arrests Hamas Mastermind Behind Kidnapping, Murder of Three Teens

avatar by Dave Bender

Side-by-side graves of the slain teens (Ch. 2 News - screenshot)

Side-by-side graves of the slain teens. Photo: Channel 2/Screenshot.

Israeli security officials on Tuesday evening announced the arrest of the chief of a Hamas cell, who has confessed to organizing the abduction and murder of three Israeli teens a month-and-a-half ago.

Hussam Kawasma, who arranged the three-man cell which kidnapped Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel from a hitch hiking post south of Jerusalem on the night of July 12,  was arrested several weeks ago.

He was caught trying to flee to Jordan, according to The Jerusalem Post.

The State Prosecutor said Kawasma told investigators that he funded, found weapons, and helped bury the bodies on land he’d recently purchased.

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Under interrogation, Kawasma admitted that the operation, whose brutality shocked the Israeli public, received training and funding from Hamas handlers in Gaza, according to Army radio.

Officials said he is related to one of the kidnappers.

The other  two cell members are still at large.

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