The Israeli Security Agency announced the capture of another Hamas cell in Hebron – this one headed by the brother of the terrorist behind the murder of three Israeli teens in June 2014.
The Shin Bet (Israeli Security Agency) on Sunday announced the busting of a Hamas terror cell in November in a joint operation with the IDF. Headed by Muhammed Ali Kawasme, 38 – brother of Hassam Ali Kawasme, who planned the abduction and murder of three teenage boys in June 2014 – the four-member cell was planning shooting attacks along Route 35, a busy highway in south-central Israel.
The other three cell members are Imad Hashamun, 32, who had served time in prison for terrorism; Amar Awiwi, 29; and Hasam Hashalmun, 24. All are residents of Hebron, a major center of Palestinian terror.
According to the Shin Bet, Kawasme and Hashalmun drove several times along the highway for surveillance purposes.
The cell members purchased an M-16 rifle and handguns and were planning to shoot at vehicles passing along the route, the Shin Bet said. Kawasme also recruited logistical assistants in order to acquire a stolen vehicle to be used in the terror attack as well as to assist the murderers to flee from the scene and escape the authorities.
The terrorists were indicted at the Judea military court with conspiring to cause the death of innocent civilians and membership in a Hamas terror cell.
“The capture of this terrorist cell, which displayed a high level of preparedness in planning an attack, again shows the persistent efforts by Hamas operatives in Hebron to carry out serious terror attacks,” the Shin Bet stated.
It was the third capture of a Hamas terror cell in recent weeks.
On Thursday, the Shin Bet nabbed a six-member Hamas terror cell in the Jerusalem vicinity. The cell members, inspired by the June 2014 kidnapping, hailed from Palestinian neighborhoods of Jerusalem and Hebron. They were planning to abduct an Israeli and negotiate his release for the freedom of terrorists serving time in Israeli prison. One of the members, Maher Kawasme, also belonged to the Kawasme terror clan.
In December, security forces nabbed a 25-member Hamas cell – mostly students – in Abu Dis, a Palestinian town just east of Jerusalem, that was planning massive suicide bombings and other acts of terror. The investigation led to the discovery of a makeshift laboratory for creating explosives