If there’s one thing Israelis and Palestinian terrorists have in common, it’s a love for affordable Chinese-made products. The Defense Ministry said Tuesday that terror groups in the Gaza Strip have been ordering equipment online in an attempt to smuggle contraband into the coastal enclave.
Among the sites favored by terrorists is the popular Chinese online retailer AliExpress, the ministry said in a statement.
Among the items Israel intercepted in October were laser sights, small drones, telescopes, binoculars, metal detectors, hand-held radio equipment and knives.
Border Crossing Authority officials and members of the Defense Ministry’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) at the Erez border crossing have seized hundreds of packages containing forbidden items that they suspected were headed to terror groups such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the statement said.
All mail packages heading into Gaza are first checked by Israeli security officials. In recent weeks security teams have noticed a rise in the number of banned items disguised as legitimate packages.
Many of those items are defined by defense officials as having dual uses — both civilian and military.
In recent weeks security staff have also recovered small motors, transformers, fiber-optical cable cutters, tiny electric drills, head-flashlights, and power supplies, the statement said.
In October, security personnel thwarted an attempt to smuggle thousands of military tactical shooting gloves into Gaza Strip. The gloves were hidden in a shipment marked as clothing and brought to the Kerem Shalom crossing.
Earlier the same month, Defense Ministry Crossing Authority officials intercepted a shipment of military-style boots bound for the Strip that had been hidden inside colorful, cartoon-adorned slippers.