(photo credit: Associated Press)
Nadim Injaz, the Palestinian who barricaded himself in the Turkish Embassy in
Tel Aviv on Tuesday and sparked panic by threatening to blow it up, was the
subject of an undercover police operation in 2007.
Back then, he was
arrested after being lured by police to a phony meeting at a Tel Aviv hotel
because police already feared three years ago that he would try to carry out
violent attacks, The Jerusalem Post has learned.
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In August 2006, Injaz
broke into the British Embassy wielding a toy handgun and threatened to commit
suicide if he was not granted asylum.
The Israel Police Counter-
Terrorism Force was called to the scene, and British Embassy officials allowed
police to manage the situation, unlike the Turkish officials who blocked access
to police on Tuesday evening.
Injaz, who claims to be a Shin Bet (Israel
Security Agency) informant whose life is in danger in the West Bank, was
arrested after the British Embassy incident, and later sentenced to a year in
Security forces have dismissed Injaz’s claims of being an
After being released from prison, Injaz granted Channel 10 an
interview in October 2007, in which he repeated claims that he was an informant
for the Shin Bet and threatened to carry out attacks if he was not granted
Police watched that interview and became concerned
that Injaz would carry out his threats.
“He’s not exactly the picture of
mental health,” a source familiar with Injaz’s history told the Post
Wednesday night. “What he wanted then, and what he wants now, is asylum or
Israeli residency or citizenship.
He was never a source for either the
Shin Bet or the police.”
The source said Injaz, originally from Ramallah,
had been an active thief and had traded in stolen goods, and had a history of
Injaz had no permanent address and was living in hostels, the
In 2007, after police arrested him at the Tel Aviv hotel,
authorities made all of their evidence on Injaz’s property offenses available to
state prosecutors, in a bid to put him behind bars. He was sentenced to three
years in prison, and was released late last month, weeks before Tuesday’s
Turkish Embassy incident.
“Injaz’s theories about being an informant are
made up. He knows that one of the criteria for Palestinians to receive an
Israeli ID card is to be a former informant, and he tried to exploit that
route,” the source said.
His custody was extended by the Tel Aviv
Magistrate’s Court by a week on Wednesday.
Appearing in a wheelchair with
a bandaged leg where he had been shot by a Turkish Embassy security guard, Injaz
yelled out, “I call on all informers to kill the Jews! [Palestinian Authority
President Mahmoud Abbas aka] Abu Mazen killed Yasser Arafat by poisoning his
pita. All informers should raid the embassies.”
Earlier on Wednesday,
Turkish diplomatic sources asked Israel to increase security at the embassy in
Tel Aviv, the Istanbul-based daily Hurriyet
“This incident has
proven that there is a security weakness. The results of Tuesday’s attack would
have been worse if our security personnel had not been able to act in time,” a
Turkish diplomatic source told Hurriyet.