Israel thwarts ‘large scale’ bombing, 4 terrorists arrested

Israeli security agency arrests four operatives from the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade, disables activate bomb hidden in fire extinguisher ready for detonation.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

Israel’s Shin Bet security agency announced on Monday that it foiled a bombing plot that could have killed Israeli civilians.

The agency arrested four members of a terror cell and disabled an active bomb before it was detonated.

The terrorists were arrested on December 14th, and a bomb hidden inside a fire extinguisher that was intended to be used in a forthcoming attack was seized and destroyed by the Shin Bet.

News of the arrests was not made public until nearly two weeks after the attack was thwarted.

According to the Shin Bet, operatives from Palestinian Authority-controlled towns in Judea and Samaria were planning to set off an explosive in densely packed civilian areas within Israel, using a bomb similar to those that were detonated in Jerusalem in late November.

The four terrorists – affiliated with the PA’s ruling Fatah party’s military arm, the Al-Aqsa’ Martyrs’ Brigade – were in close contact with Gaza-based terrorists, who gave them instructions on how to construct the bomb.

Ahmed Taher Jaradat of Jenin, Kayes a-Shiab of Qabatiya, Younes Odeh of al-Ras, and Khaled Marei of Bal’a were identified as the arrested members of the cell.

The Shin Bet statement did not indicate whether any of them are believed to have been involved with the deadly twin Jerusalem bombings several weeks ago, as authorities have not yet arrested anyone for those attacks.

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The agency noted the communication between Gaza-based terrorists and operatives in Judea and Samaria, saying that it “considers Hamas to be responsible for all terror activity emanating from the Gaza Strip.”

“The war against terrorists and their cells continues on a daily basis in all sectors. The security forces are constantly working to thwart all attempts to attack us,” said outgoing Prime Minister Yair Lapid in a statement.

“The battle is not over. The State of Israel has zero tolerance for terrorism and is taking constant action against it. This is the only way we can maintain routine life alongside our relentless fight against terrorism.”