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(photo credit: GPO [file])
Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) agents thwarted an attempt last month by two operatives from the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) in the Gaza Strip to infiltrate Israel in a bid to kidnap IDF soldiers, it was released for publication on Sunday.
On June 11, the two operatives, Ibrahim Magdov, 22, and Mahmad Azar, 20, were arrested in a joint IDF-Shin Bet operation as they tried infiltrating into Israel from Egypt. The two had crossed separately into Egypt several days earlier from the Gaza Strip.
Magdov told Shin Bet interrogators that Jamal Abu Samhadana - the former PRC chief who was killed in an IAF missile strike last month - recruited him in June to infiltrate Israel and to abduct and murder soldiers whose bodies would be used as bargaining chips to negotiate the release of Palestinians held by Israel.
The plan, Magdov said, was to kidnap a soldier in the Tel Aviv area with the assistance of additional operatives who were supposed to join the two after infiltrating Israel from the Gaza Strip. Samhadana told Magdov to bury the soldiers in open fields outside Rishon Letzion.
The slain PRC chief also ordered Magdov to assist Azar in perpetrating a shooting attack against Israelis. Azar said he was supposed to receive a rifle and ammunition from PRC operatives in the West Bank who were also supposed to escort him to the planned attack site.
The PRC, security officials said, was behind the kidnapping last week of Cpl. Gilad Shalit, abducted during a terror strike on his IDF outpost near Kerem Shalom. The PRC was also responsible for the abduction and murder of Eliyahu Asheri, from Itamar, whose body was found on Thursday after he had been abducted last Sunday as he tried hitching a ride near the settlement of Ofra.
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