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Israeli accused of spying for Hamas, providing intel on rocket defense array

Shin Bet says Mohammad Abu Adra, who for family reasons was permitted frequent travel between Israel and Gaza, was recruited 18 months ago to gather information for terror group

Mohammad Abu Adra (Shin Bet)
Mohammad Abu Adra (Shin Bet)

An Israeli civilian was indicted Friday for allegedly acting as an agent for the Hamas terror group inside Israel, providing the organization with information that included locations of Iron Dome missile defense batteries.

Mohammad Abu Adra, 43, was arrested on February 3 following an investigation by police and the Shin Bet security service.

Authorities said Abu Adra is the son of an Israeli Bedouin father and a Gazan mother, and his wife is from Gaza as well. Due to his special status, he was allowed to travel on a regular basis between the Strip and the Israeli city of Rehovot.

For this reason, Hamas recruited Abu Adra some 18 months ago, the Shin Bet said, with Abu Adra agreeing to work for the terror group, maintaining clandestine contacts with it and gathering and transmitting information requested of him from inside Israeli territory.

No information was provided on the nature of the information provided to Hamas by Abu Adra beyond Iron Dome locations.

An Iron Dome missile defense system fires an interceptor at a target during an exercise in early 2021. (Defense Ministry)

He was indicted Friday at the Beersheba District Court for security offenses that include membership in a terror organization, a decision to commit treason and providing information to the enemy.

A statement from the Shin Bet said Hamas “is ceaselessly working to recruit Israeli citizens for the purpose of intelligence gathering in order to enable terror attacks in Israel.”

A source in the security agency said this was another example of the group taking advantage of those permitted to cross between Israel and Gaza “to destabilize the region, despite of, and in parallel with, ongoing efforts to reach a [long-term] arrangement” between the sides.

A similar case was reported by the Shin Bet in January 2020, when it arrested two Israeli citizens who allegedly used their ability to move between Gaza and Israel to provide the terror group with details about Israeli security facilities and other intelligence information.

Palestinians prepare to cross from Israel into the Gaza Strip at the Erez Crossing, September 3, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

According to the agency, the two men — Rami Amoudi, 30, and Rajab Daka, 34 — were recruited by the Gaza-based terror group in October 2019 and tasked with filming security installations in central Israel, including “military bases, police stations and Iron Dome battery placements.”

The Shin Bet said Daka was also asked to provide the precise locations of where rockets launched from Gaza had landed during the bouts of fighting, apparently to help the terror group improve its accuracy.

In November an Israeli citizen was sentenced to seven years in prison after he was found guilty of heading a cross-border smuggling ring that transferred thousands of tons of concrete, piping, metals and electronic equipment from Israel to Hamas.

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