(Communicated by the IDF Spokesperson)

Twelve wanted terrorists were arrested early this morning in a joint IDF and ISA operation near the Daheishe refugee camp, in Bethlehem. Among those arrested are officers in the Palestinian security forces who were involved in planning and carrying out terrorist attacks. The terrorists were hiding in a local psychiatric institution.

IDF forces called upon the terrorists to leave their place of hiding and to turn themselves in. In response, the forces were fired upon from within the institution. An exchange of fire ensued and ended when the terrorists gave themselves up.

The wanted Palestinians carried three pistols and a rifle.

This is not the first time in which terrorists have used medical facilities for operations as well as a place of refuge; the use of medical facilities by terror organizations is a violation of international law.

 

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The IDF and the ISA arrested 12 wanted terrorists, including nine senior terrorists (the majority members of Tanzim), who were engaged in the planning of suicide attacks from their hideout in a psychiatric institution in Bethlehem. The terrorists opened fire from within the institution. The exchanges of fire ended when the terrorists gave themselves up.

The terrorists, operating in the framework of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, were engaged in the planning and carrying out of suicide attacks that were in advanced stages of preparation.

It was the intention of the IDF to avoid civilian casualties and it is important to note that there were no casualties in the operation.

The following terrorists were among those arrested in the operation:

Jamal Hamamreh – Born in 1967, a resident of Hussan, and listed among the senior terrorists leading the Tanzim in the area of Bethlehem. He is an officer in the Palestinian Preventive Intelligence apparatus, and was engaged in recent months in the planning of suicide attacks to be carried out in Jerusalem, and was involved in the planning of a terrorist attack in the coming days.

Ravia Ravia – Born in 1980, a resident of Daheishe, and deputy to Hamamreh. He is a member of the Palestinian General Intelligence forces, and was involved in numerous shooting attacks and attacks involving explosive charges. In addition, Ravia was also involved in attempts to carry out suicide attacks against Israelis.

Adel Hagazi – Bor in 1971 and resident of Bethlehem. He is a terrorist belonging to the ‘Tanzim and has been involved in numerous shooting attacks.

Zehran Zidat – Born in 1965, a resident of Hebron, and commander of a Tanzim cell who had escaped to Bethlehem in order to seek refuge with the Palestinian Authority. He has been involved in the planning and carrying out of terrorist attacks.

Anan Zelah – Born in 1979, a resident of El-Khader. He is the commander of the Tanzim in El-Khader, and involved in the planning and carrying out of terrorist attacks.

Nazer Gadia – Born in 1973, a resident of Banei-Naim, He is a Tanzim terrorist from the vicinity of Hebron who used the hospital as his hideout.

Hanni Bashir – Born in 1981, and resident of Daheishe. He is a senior Tanzim terrorist operating in the area of Bethlehem, as well as an explosives engineer who had began with the the Tanzim in Daheishe, and founded a cell that operated with Hamas in Bethlehem.

Hathem Yousef – Born in 1976, and resident of Duha. He is a Tanzim terrorist and a member of Bashir Nefah’s special force (PA) in Bethlehem. He has been involved in terrorist attacks.

Issa Harimi – Born in 1982, and resident of Bethlehem. He is a Tanzim terrorist who was involved in an attempt to carry out an attack with an explosive charge on April 4, 2003. The explosive detonated prematurely.