The Israelis continue to break up terrorist financial schemes, with the latest being the exposure of a group in Judea and Samaria (also known as the West Bank) that was laundering money for Hamas—via a travel agency. “Meet the West Bank-based Al-Haramain ‘travel agency’. Instead of booking hotels, Al-Haramain has in fact been operating a Hamas money laundering ring, transferring illicit terror funds from Gaza to the West Bank. This dirty money funded terror activity and Hamas salaries,” said a post on the IDF Twitter feed.
A follow-up post said earlier this week they had apprehended three Hamas operatives who were part of the ring. Said the tweet on busting this fake travel agency, “We won’t let terror be Hamas’ destination.”
Unmasking the travel agency scam is just the latest exposure of an effort by Hamas to hide terror activities in civilian guise. Earlier this month, the Israel Security Agency announced in a press release they had uncovered a plot to get an explosives expert from Gaza into Israel via a “humanitarian permit in order to receive medical treatment.”
The expert, Fadi Abu al-Sabah, had been trained for roughly a year by Hamas to set up an explosives laboratory inside Judea and Samaria, with the goal to build bombs that could be used in terror attacks. The ISA said the explosives expert had even paid a Gaza doctor for false documents “purporting to show that he could not receive proper treatment in the Gaza Strip to help ensure that he would receive a permit for treatment in Israel.”
Said the press release, “He exploited the humanitarian permit he had received to enter Israel in order to receive medical treatment in Hebron. Instead, he joined up with elements in Hebron in order to advance terrorist activities and carry out his mission.”
The ISA said al-Sabah intended to develop weapons for “severe terrorist attacks the goal of which was to kill Israelis.” He was arrested in Israel in May.
This and the travel agency incident are further evidence that Hamas seeks to expand their terror influence from Gaza to Judea and Samaria.
Said the ISA press release earlier this month, “In recent months, the ISA has also thwarted attempts by the Hamas terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip to establish a number of terrorist cells throughout Judea and Samaria in order to carry out terrorist attacks.”
(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, July 17, 2019)