The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) on Monday announced that it had arrested a Hamas terror cell which had planned to kidnap an IDF soldier and to peretrate a mix of shooting and bombing attacks against the IDF in the Binyamin region of the West Bank.
The actual arrests took place last month and were coordinated with the IDF and Israel Police, which included nine Palestinians affiliated with Hamas from the village of Biddu in the Binyamin Regional Council.
One of the distinct aspects of the terror cell was how meticulously it used surveillance of IDF patrols to gather intelligence in order to best carry out the kidnapping and the other planned attacks.
According to the Shin Bet, the Hamas terror cell studied manufacturing explosives and went as far as to establish its own explosives laboratory.
As part of the investigation, the Shin Bet seized the laboratory and explosive materials, including raw materials for producing fireworks, pipes for pipe bombs, and other items, such as Carlo guns.
The terror cell's heavy planning
The resourceful cell mapped out escape routes and prepared an ideal location for keeping a kidnapped soldier hidden from security forces, said the Shin Bet.
The agency noted that just two years ago, it had thwarted a similar Hamas cell including relatives of many of the members of the current cell.
The terror cell worked hard to maximize its secrecy and avoid detection.
"The General Security Service, together with the IDF and the Israel Police, will continue to work even harder to thwart any attempt by terrorist elements outside to promote terrorist activity against the State of Israel and to bring those involved to justice," Shin Bet said.
"The General Security Service, together with the IDF and the Israel Police, will continue to work even harder to thwart any attempt by terrorist elements outside to promote terrorist activity against the State of Israel and to bring those involved to justice."Shin Bet
The police undercover border patrol forces and the IDF's Oketz Unit, along with the police and the IDF's aerial surveillance units were critical in carrying out the arrests, based on Shin Bet intelligence.
Undercover forces busted into three separate locations where the cell members were holed up.
Police Asst.-Ch. Brick Yitzchak said that the combined power and coordination of the various Israeli security forces had once again proven their decisive ability to defeat terror plots in the West Bank.
The investigation of the terror cell is ongoing as of Monday and it was unclear when the IDF prosecution would file indictments.
Following the July 3-4 massive IDF operation in Jenin, it was hoped that terror in the West Bank would be reduced, with the current waves of terror dating back to March 2022, but so far terror has continued at similar if slightly reduced levels.
Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this report.