Shin Bet arrests Hezbollah terrorist who planned attacks in Israel

Hezbollah recruited a Palestinian and tasked him with carrying out attacks in Israel. 

Israeli security forces recently arrested a Palestinian operating on behalf of the Lebanon-based Hezbollah terror organization and planned attacks in Israel, the Shin Bet (Israel’s Security Agency) announced Thursday.

The terrorist, Yusef Yasser Sweilam, 23 of Kalkilya, had been instructed by Hezbollah to advance terrorist attacks, including the abduction of Israelis.

Sweilam, a metal worker by trade, told the Shin Bet he had been recruited by Hezbollah through a Facebook profile that serves as a platform to recruit members.

At some point, Sweilam was instructed to open an “operational” e-mail account for receiving encryption software, which he then used to communicate with his Hezbollah handlers.

Sweilam’s handlers directed him to carry out various terror-related tasks, including photographing and gathering information on IDF bases and checkpoints, as well as sites in Jerusalem’s Old City.

He was also directed to set up a terrorist cell in order to carry out an abduction of an Israeli and pass the victim into Lebanon.

Sweilam was arrested before he was able to carry through with his plans, the Shin Bet stressed.

Sweilam has been indicted in the Samaria Military Court.

Hezbollah’s repeated failed attempts

Israel’s security forces have in the past captured several terror cells operating on behalf of Hezbollah in Israel.

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In October, Israel captured a Hezbollah terror cell that operated in Israel and planned terror attacks in Northern Israel.

In August, Israel uncovered and arrested members of a cell recruited online by Hezbollah to carry out terror attacks in Israel. The cell members were also from Kalkilya.

After the arrests were publicized, the Shin Bet stated that in recent years, Hezbollah’s Unit 133, which orchestrates terrorism against Israel, has been “working intensively” to recruit Palestinian members “in order to carry out terror attacks against Israeli targets.”

In January 2016, Israeli security forces apprehended a Palestinian terror cell that was directed by Hezbollah and was ordered to prepare suicide bombings and shooting attacks, to collect intelligence, and to establish a training camp.

“Hezbollah is making use of remote recruitment and activation of terror cells, while using the internet covertly in order to execute low-key terrorist attacks from abroad,” the Shin Bet stated after the cell was busted.

By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News