A senior Hamas official has told a Turkish news outlet that three Arab countries are working “in coordination with Israeli security forces” to arrest members of the Gaza-based terror organization, Israel’s Ynet website reported Tuesday.
The official — who did name the countries in question — said that Hamas operatives only work abroad with the full consent of the host nation.
The comments come days after Hamas accused Egypt of abducting four of its fighters from a bus as they traveled to Cairo airport from the Rafah Border Crossing between Gaza and Sinai.
Egypt said the four were kidnapped by Islamic State-affiliated terrorists, but The Times of Israel learned that they were likely arrested by the Egyptian military, after Cairo’s intelligence officials were alerted that they were en route to train in Iran for training.
In Gaza, it is believed that the four were intercepted by Egyptian intelligence operatives, raising tensions between Hamas and Egypt.
Egypt has been closely monitoring the activities of the Hamas military wing in Gaza, and especially in the area bordering the Sinai, in light of information that the Hamas fighters have been working together with Islamic State-linked activists in the peninsula. Egypt is said to have intelligence indicating that Hamas fighters gather information on Egyptian Army movements in the area, and are working with IS to smuggle weaponry in and out of Gaza.