Security forces arrest 15 alleged Hamas men in West Bank

IDF says the Ramallah-area operatives received funding and instructions from Gaza to carry out ‘activities’ related to terror group

Illustrative: IDF soldiers conduct raids in the West Bank on September 27, 2017. (Israel Defense Forces)
Illustrative: IDF soldiers conduct raids in the West Bank on September 27, 2017. (Israel Defense Forces)

Israeli security forces arrested 15 operatives of the Hamas terror organization in raids in the West Bank late Saturday and early Sunday, the military said.

According to a statement from the IDF, a joint operation by the army, Shin Bet and Israel Police targeted individuals who had been in contact with senior Hamas official Khaled al-Din Hamed and were receiving instructions from the Gaza-based group on “various activities” they were to carry out in the West Bank.

All 15 hailed from the Ramallah area north of Jerusalem.

The suspects also allegedly received funds from Hamas for the activities, which authorities say were linked to terrorist actions. At least one car was confiscated in the raid.

The forces also shuttered a printing press that was producing materials the IDF said were “inciting to terrorism.”

“The exposure of this activity reveals yet again the ceaseless efforts of the Hamas terror organization in Gaza to generate terror actions in the West Bank through funding, instructions and dissemination of its message, without any concern for the ramifications this will have on the Palestinian residents of the West Bank,” the army said.

Hamas, the IDF said, will be held responsible for any attacks carried out due to its efforts.

Four other Palestinians, who are not part of the Hamas-linked network, were arrested in the overnight raids.

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