Israeli Arab, 17, charged in terror plot

Nazareth resident planned suicide attack on local hotel to prove loyalty.

palestinian arrest298.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
palestinian arrest298.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
A suicide bombing against Upper Nazareth's Plaza Hotel was narrowly averted less than a month ago, police said Sunday after delivering an indictment against a 17-year-old Israeli Arab. On Sunday, he was indited in the Nazareth District Court on charges that included attempting to carry out a terrorist attack, conspiring to commit a crime, and contact with a foreign agent. Police said the suspect came from a broken home and spent his childhood in Samaria. The suspect recently moved in with his mother and siblings in Nazareth. When he visited his father in Daan in the Palestinian Authority, the teen was allegedly threatened by Islamic Jihad and Hamas terrorists who said he was an Israeli informer. He informed his parents about the harassment, and was detained by police in January for allegedly meeting with terrorists. Then, he denied any intention of carrying out a suicide bombing, but the Nazareth District Court issued a six-month ban against him entering the West Bank. The youth allegedly stayed away from the West Bank until September, when he again visited his father. This time, however, when he was reportedly told by members of Fatah's Al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade that he could clear his name by carrying out a suicide bombing, he allegedly agreed. The teen allegedly decided that his target would be Upper Nazareth's Plaza Hotel, because of its "high Jewish occupancy and lax security." According to police, the youth was supposed to receive an explosive belt from the terrorists at the beginning of this month. But shortly before it was to be delivered, Nazareth police received an intelligence tip warning of the attack. According to the indictment, the youth was allegedly heard at least twice saying that he planned to carry out a bombing. Two days before he was supposed to receive the bomb belt, the teen was arrested.