Israeli-Arab woman ‘sent by Gazan group to carry out terror attacks in Israel’

40-year-old woman spied on Haifa installations, train station, and court on behalf of Gazan jihadist group, Shin Bet says.

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November 5, 2015 15:30
3 minute read.
Terror Israel

Terror suspect Nasrin Hassan Abdullah Hassan allegedly spied on sensitive sites in Haifa for Gaza jihadist group‏. (photo credit: SHIN BET,REUTERS)

 
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Security forces on Thursday arrested a 40-year-old Israeli- Arab woman and mother of seven in October at the Erez border crossing. She was indicted for spying and entering Israel from Gaza, to carry out terrorist attacks on behalf of a jihadist organization.

The woman from Haifa, Nasrin Hassan Abdullah Hassan, married a Gazan resident 15 years ago, and had been living in the Strip and moving back and forth in recent years.

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She was arrested last month, the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) said on Thursday, after trying to cross into Israel.

During questioning, “it emerged that in October 2013 she was recruited the Katim al-Mujahadin [Holy Warriors Battalions] organization, which has carried out a number of terrorist attacks against Israeli targets in recent years, including rocket fire at Israel,” the Shin Bet said.

The Southern District Attorney’s Office on Thursday filed an indictment with the Beersheba District Court against Hassan for spying, which identified Katim al-Mujahadin as a subgroup of al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade.

“It also emerged that she was recruited to carry out terrorist attacks within Israel, due to her being an Israeli citizen with freedom of access within Israel, and to and from the country,” the Shin Bet added.

During two previous stays in Israel, in January and July 2014, she allegedly received instructions from the Ali Abu Aatzi to gather intelligence on Israeli government buildings and infrastructure sites in Haifa, including Haifa port, a train station in the northern city, an Interior Ministry branch, a court house, a synagogue and security arrangements at these sites.

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Other terrorists whom Hassan had contact with included Abu Leil, Abu Fares, Omar Abu Aatzi and a man known only as Badr, according to the indictment.

At one point, Hassan delayed a spying operation when she was seven months pregnant and she received a “secret” telephone for certain communications with the terrorist group, said the indictment.

She allegedly visited the sites and took photographs of them with her smartphone.

The indictment stated that she recorded her findings, including the number of security forces at each location and their methodology in checking visitors.

She recorded how the location of all security video cameras and the number and location of all entrances to the various buildings, said the indictment.

“Upon her return to the Gaza Strip, she passed on this information to the terrorist organization, clearly knowing that it will be used to carry out terrorist activities,” the Shin Bet said.

Her mission did not end with spying for terrorists, according to the Shin Bet. She “agreed to carry out attacks in Israel for the organization, and to that end, she receive training in how to prepare an explosive device,” the intelligence service added.

In March 2015, Hassan attended the terrorist group’s camp for learning how to assemble bombs and she agreed to carry out such an attack after she attended an additional lesson in explosives, said the indictment.

In line with instructions from her handlers, Hassan tried – and failed – to recruit Israeli-Arab citizens for attack missions.

“The activities by this Israeli civilian are severe. She chose to join a terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip, assist it in it efforts to carry out attacks in Israel and made cynical use of her Israeli citizenship,” the Shin Bet said.

The woman joined the terrorist group for payment, including receiving NIS 200 in March 2014 for her photographs and information on Haifa.

Later, she was given NIS 300 relating to future surveillance operations, and after November 2014 she was given an additional NIS 100 and promised NIS 3,000-NIS 4,000 following the success of her spying.

One potential spying operation that she never got to undertake was reconnaissance of the residences of high ranking IDF officials after receiving a map of where they live.

The charges include a variety of spying and conspiracy charges and the prosecution requested to hold her in detention until the end of the trial against her.

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