Gaza man who overstayed medical permit indicted for joining police in Strip

Indictment says man joined Gaza police in 2008, underwent military and weapons training, and worked for Hamas election campaign in 2006.

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January 5, 2015 17:23
1 minute read.
Gaza border fence

IDF vehicle drives along Gaza border fence [file]. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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A Gaza man who entered Israel to receive medical treatment and overstayed the 10-day permit by almost a year, was indicted on Sunday because he previously served in the Gaza police force.

Ramzi Bin-Nafez Afana, 31, was indicted in the Beersheba District Court on Sunday on charges of membership of a banned organization, taking part in illegal military training, possession of a weapon, and illegal residence.

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Afana entered Israel on December 2, 2013 with a tenday permit so he could receive medical treatment at an Israeli facility. According to the indictment, at some point after entering, he made his way to the West Bank where he stayed until he was arrested on December 2, 2014, a year to the day after he entered Israel for treatment.

The charges in the indictment deal almost entirely with Afana’s alleged decision in 2008 to join the Gaza police, which is run by Hamas.

The indictment said that he was recruited by a man named Iyad Sharif and that two days later he began police training, “which included physical fitness workouts and learning how to take a Kalashnikov assault rifle apart and put it back together again.”

The training went on for a few months after which Afana began working as a patrol cop in Gaza, before quitting a few months later because of health problems, the indictment says.

“Through these actions he worked within the framework of Hamas, which is an illegal organization, and went through military and weapons training, both of which are capable of hurting the security of the state,” the indictment read.

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It also stated that in 2005, Afana became a member of Hamas and joined their “Usra” religious study groups, and helped recruit other young people to join the organization.

It says that he worked on the Hamas election campaign in 2006.

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