Police, Shin Bet, carry out searches in Umm al-Fahm for 'terror financing'

Police closed three NGOs in January that the Shin Bet said was funneling money in order to “inflame tensions on the Temple Mount”.

March 9, 2015 15:04
1 minute read.

Shekel money bills. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Agents from the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and detectives from the LAHAV 433 branch of the Israel Police executed search warrants in the Israeli-Arab city of Umm el-Fahm on Monday, as part of an ongoing investigation into organizations accused of “funding terrorist activities” police said.

Police said the searches were carried out in the Umm el-Fahm area as a continuation of the investigation that in January resulted in the closure of three nongovernmental organizations the Shin Bet said were funneling money into in order to “inflame tensions on the Temple Mount.”

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Police said a number of people were detained during the searches and that investigators seized computers, documents and money.

On January 12, the Shin Bet and police closed the charities Riad al-Aksa, Al-Jafar Fund for Art and Literature, and the Nazareth-based Muslims for al-Aksa.

The groups were formed by the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in October 2014 with the goal of “funding activities meant to disrupt the security of visitors to the Temple Mount and in order to inflame tensions and cause disturbances, while harming the sovereignty of the State of Israel at the site,” the Shin Bet said in a statement on January 12.

The closures followed a decision by Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon on December 29 to declare them banned organizations.

The charities stand accused of paying Muslim students, activists and youths to go to the Temple Mount and maintain a presence there in order to deter Jewish visitors.

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