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March 29, 2022 8:48 am
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Israel: Shin Bet to Streamline Anti-Terror Operations

avatar by i24 News

Israeli border police secure the area at the scene of an attack in which people were killed by gunmen on a main street in Hadera, Israel, March 27, 2022. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

i24 News – Israel’s internal security agency the Shin Bet is reorganizing its structure to shift responsibility for thwarting domestic terrorism to a single unit rather than the current three.

The change was decided a few months ago by Shin Bet’s new director Ronen Bar, and is expected to be implemented soon, Haaretz reported.

For some Israeli officials, the restructuring can’t come soon enough.

According to a senior police official, the security service has not issued any warnings related to Islamic State (IS) activity in Israel over the past three years, despite there being dozens of supporters known in the Jewish state.

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The comments on Monday came after two fatal terror attacks were carried out by IS supporters in Israel within a week — one in the southern city of Be’er Sheva and the other in the northern city of Hadera by Umm al-Fahm residents.

“We’re seeing a weakness at Shin Bet in terms of anything related to monitoring terrorist or security-related activity against Israel,” a senior police source told Haaretz.

“In the Israeli Arab sector, most of Shin Bet’s force is [engaged in] investigating and not intelligence.”

Until now, responsibility for thwarting terror plans inside Israel was divided among two Shin Bet regional commands and a headquarters unit.

The northern command handled threats from Israeli-Arabs in the region as well as those from the Lebanese border, while the southern command addressed threats among Bedouin communities in the Negev.

Shin Bet’s headquarters unit handled Jewish terror and extremists.

When Bar took office last October, he decided to streamline the agency’s approach, according to Haaretz.

The new “Israeli theater” unit will be responsible for handling all Israeli-Arab terror.

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