Muslim Brotherhood demonstration, Amman, August 8, 2014. .
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Jordanian government arrested 21 members of the Muslim Brotherhood for smuggling weapons and money into the West Bank, Arab media reported this week.
The Brotherhood members are accused of creating a secret military organization and planning to carry out terrorist attacks in the West Bank, senior Jordanian sources told the London-based daily Al-Hayat.
Two of the suspects were charged with receiving military training in Gaza after participating in an organized visit there. According to the sources, “these two young men tried to train other Muslim Brotherhood members in order to carry out operations in the occupied West Bank.”
They also raised money to buy weapons, the report said.
The name of senior Turkish- based Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri, formerly a prisoner in Israel, came up in the investigation as well, according to the sources. However, the report said Arouri had claimed over the weekend that he had nothing to do with the Jordanian investigation, asserting that “our resistance” is focused on “Palestine” and “the Zionist occupation.”
The report came after last week’s announcement that the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and the IDF had thwarted a large transnational Hamas network that was preparing to carry out an array of attacks against Israelis. Some 30 Hamas members were arrested in raids that the IDF’s Duvdevan undercover unit led.
According to the Shin Bet, the network planned to target Jerusalem’s Teddy soccer stadium and light rail, and to carry out car bombings and kidnappings in Judea and Samaria, as well as overseas.
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The nerve center of the network was situated in Hamas’s headquarters in Turkey, the security agency added.
Last month, official sources said Jordan had arrested the deputy head of the country’s Muslim Brotherhood for criticizing the United Arab Emirates’ move to designate the Islamist political movement and its local affiliates a terrorist group.
Zaki Bani Rushaid was detained shortly after a latenight meeting at the party’s headquarters in Amman, the sources said, marking the first arrest of a major political opposition figure in Jordan in recent years.
The state security prosecutor- general ordered his arrest on charges of “souring relations with a friendly country,” after Bani Rushaid wrote an opinion column attacking the Gulf state’s role in a regional crackdown on political Islam, the sources added.Yaakov Lappin and Reuters contributed to this report.
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