Jerusalem, January 6, 2004

Belgian national arrested on suspicion of connection to outlawed Al Aqsa Fund
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Said Maduhi, 42, a Belgian national, was arrested on December 29, 2003, at the Erez crossing, as he tried to enter the Gaza Strip, on suspicion of arriving in Israel and Judea, Samaria and Gaza in order to meet with members of a Hamas charitable association, the Al Aqsa Fund, which the government declared to be a terrorist organization in January 1998.

Maduhi arrived at the Erez crossing with a 12-member delegation (Belgian nationals and others), that had arrived in Judea, Samaria and Gaza several days previously. The delegation was delayed and its entry into the Gaza Strip barred due to OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Dan Harel’s order banning foreign nationals from entering the Gaza Strip. During questioning, it became clear that the delegation had previously visited Judea and Samaria.

Maduhi, who headed the delegation, said that his arrival had been coordinated by Muhammad Hejazi, director of the Al Aqsa Fund in Belgium. He admitted to meeting members of charitable associations in Judea and Samaria and confessed that he planned to hold similar meetings in the Gaza Strip. He claimed not to know that the associations were illegal and said that his visit was for tourism purposes (the associations he met with are known to be affiliated with Hamas and have been outlawed in Israel and Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip).

The ISA decided to release Maduhi on January 1, 2004.

   
 Belgian national arrested on suspicion of connection to outlawed Al Aqsa Fund-6-Jan-2004
 Belgian national arrested on suspicion of connection to outlawed Al Aqsa Fund-6-Jan-2004
Hamas’s use of charitable societies to fund and support terror