In first, Israel intercepts bullet-proof plates meant for Hamas

Israel thwarted yet another attempt by Hamas to smuggle materials for its terror war against Israel.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News

Israeli security forces were successful in preventing the smuggling of armoured plates into the Gaza Strip, apparently to be used by Hamas in the build-up of its terror infrastructure, the Ministry of Defense announced on Wednesday.

An Israeli truck carrying used car parts aroused the suspicion of Crossings Authority inspectors at the Kerem Shalom crossing into Gaza. A thorough inspection revealed the illicit materials.

Israeli security officials have thwarted many attempts to smuggle a wide variety of military-related materials into Gaza, but this is the first time they have uncovered such bullet-proof plates.

Security forces have launched an extensive investigation into the incident in attempt to track down the origin of the plates and the elements involved in their smuggling.

Israel’s combined security agencies have been successful in thwarting more than 500 attempts to smuggle illicit materials from Israel into the Gaza Strip since the beginning of 2015. Over 280 trucks have been confiscated as a result of illegal activity over the course of 2014.

In many of the incidents, the smuggled materials are meant for Hamas’ rocket production program or its military build-up.

In November, Israeli security forces intercepted a Palestinian truck carrying hundreds of liters of banned chemical substance that can be used for rocket production, en route from Hebron to Gaza.

In April, Israel caught 18 tons of special “metallurgical coke” coal which is used as fuel in firing furnaces to forge metals, en route to Gaza.

In March, Israel uncovered an efficient network operated by Hamas to acquire and smuggle materials used for strengthening the organization’s military infrastructure in the Gaza Strip.

By means of this network, Hamas purchased and brought into the Strip thousands of tons of raw materials that were used in its military installations and training facilities in order to prepare terror tunnels and for the manufacture of war material.

In January, Israeli naval forces successfully intercepted a shipment of materials used for weapons-production on its way to Gaza. Three Palestinians were caught trying to smuggle liquid fiberglass, which is used to manufacture rockets and mortars.

Since Israel decimated Hamas’ terror infrastructure during Operation Protective Edge, Hamas has been working relentlessly to rehabilitate its networks and replenish its weapons stockpiles.