Austria hands Hamas operative life sentence

Israel's Shin Bet aided the Austrian authorities supplying testimonies of co-conspirators.

July 31, 2017 14:38
1 minute read.
Palestinian Hamas militants take part in a memorial service for senior militant Mazen Fuqaha, in Gaz

Palestinian Hamas militants take part in a memorial service for senior militant Mazen Fuqaha, in Gaza City March 27, 2017.. (photo credit: REUTERS/MOHAMMED SALEM)

 An Austrian court has sentenced a Hamas operative to life in prison for conspiring and inciting others to carry out terror attacks in Jerusaem.

The operative, a Gaza natve who was living in Austria at the time and whose name is under an Austrian gag order, was found guilty of reaching out to two residents of the West Bank with a goal of recruting them and others to carry out grenade throwing attacks in Jerusalem. 

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The attacks, which were planned throughtout 2016 were never carried out.

Israel's Internal Security agency the Shin Bet, cought wind of the plan and arrested four residents of the West Bank suspected of involvement in the plot. Their testimony was trasferred to the Ausrians and led to the arrest of the operative, who had previously served a sentence in Israel and was released as part of a major prisoner swap in 2011, which saw hundreds of Palestinian prisoners go free in exchange for the return of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit..

Upon request from the Austrian authorities, the Shin Bet aided in the investigation by transferring testimonies of the arrested suspects via live video conference from a Tel Aviv courthouse. Those testimonies aided in reaching a conviction and the sentencing last week.

Last week the European Court of Justice ruled to leave Hamas on the EU's ist of active terrorist organizations. 

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