IDF arrests 12 in West Bank, including Islamic State activist

Other suspects are members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad

Illustrative. IDF troops in the West Bank city of Hebron (Sebastian Scheiner/AP)
Illustrative. IDF troops in the West Bank city of Hebron (Sebastian Scheiner/AP)

IDF forces arrested 12 suspects in the West Bank, one of whom was allegedly active with the Islamic State terror group, in the overnight hours between Saturday and Sunday.

The suspect involved with IS was one of seven suspects who have been implicated in throwing improvised explosives and Molotov cocktails at civilians and security forces. He was picked up in Hebron along with three others, according to Israeli news outlet Ynet.

The other suspects were allegedly involved with Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

Israeli security forces are wary of the Islamic State, which has conquered swaths of territory in Syria and Iraq, spreading into Israel and the West Bank, and have attempted to crack down on any show of support for the group. However, the popularity of the group appears to be growing among the Arab population amid some of the highest tensions the country has seen in years.

Ten Israelis have been killed in Palestinian terrorist attacks in recent weeks.

Last week police arrested six Arab Israelis for spraying graffiti in Arabic praising the Islamic State on a memorial monument for fallen Druze IDF soldiers along the Carmel Scenic Route, located east of the predominantly Druze village of Daliyat al-Karmel. The incident came in the wake of the shooting by a police officer of a 22-year-old Arab Israeli man in Kafr Kanna on November 15.

Last month, residents of Daliyat al-Karmel, south of Haifa, discovered four graffiti spray paintings of the word “Daesh” — an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State — near a soccer field in the city

In a separate incident, the words “Daesh is on the way” were found daubed in Arabic alongside an Israeli flag in the village of Bana’a, in the Galilee.

The Shin Bet internal security service and police believe that, as of last month, more than 30 Israeli Arabs have joined the Islamic State, also known by the acronyms IS, ISIS and ISIL.

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