Tuesday, April 23rd | 18 Nisan 5779

March 16, 2017 7:07 am

Israeli Authorities Disrupt More West Bank Terror Cells

avatar by Steven Emerson

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Palestinian security forces in the West Bank. Photo: Wik Commons.

Palestinian security forces in the West Bank. Photo: Wik Commons.

In January, Israeli security authorities arrested members of two different Palestinian terrorist cells in the West Bank, according to the Shin Bet. Two of the suspects belonged to the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, the military wing of Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party.

In the first case, the terrorists are suspected of participating in several attacks, including pipe bomb and Molotov cocktail assaults. One of these pipe bomb attacks injured an IDF soldier in October. Israeli authorities say that the group was planning future attacks against Israeli soldiers.

In the second case, Israeli authorities disrupted a different cell, and arrested two Hamas-affiliated operatives from the al-Aroub refugee camp. According to the Shin Bet, cell leader Ahmed al-Rahman was responsible for acquiring weapons to carry out terrorist attacks against “Israeli security forces and civilians.” Al-Rahman also recruited Mahand Jabber Muhammed abu Sal to join the cell.

“The exposure of the cells and the operations they were planning shows the high level of motivation of terror operatives to carry out serious terrorist attacks, and bears witness to the high threat level they pose,” a Shin Bet statement said.

The Shin Bet transferred its findings to Israeli military prosecutors for upcoming prosecutions.

These developments come after Israeli authorities foiled two other West Bank-based Hamas cells earlier this week. Similar to the cells that were apprehended in January, the operatives in the most recent cases were responsible for coordinating terrorist attacks and planning shooting attacks against Israeli troops and civilians.

Meanwhile, a Palestinian terrorist carried out a car ramming attack on Wednesday at the Gush Etzion Junction bus stop. The deadly attack was prevented after the terrorist was shot and wounded.

While most foiled terror cells in the West Bank are affiliated with Hamas, the recent arrests of Fatah terrorists reaffirms that Israel faces real threats from Mahmoud Abbas’ government. Fatah is often referred to as the “moderate” Palestinian faction, but operatives with allegiance to Fatah’s political party continue to plan and execute terrorist attacks against Israelis.

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