(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Office)

On 21 March 2006, the ISA and the Israel Police arrested, near Sha’alivim, on the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway, Kafah Nouada, born in 1982, from Yamun, who was in possession of  a bomb with which he intended to perpetrate a suicide-bombing at Haifa Bay Central Bus Station, with which he was familiar from having worked illegally in the area. He admitted that he had been dispatched by the Islamic Jihad from the Jenin area, that he had entered Israel in a vehicle that was transporting persons without entry permits to work in Israel. Other suspects were arrested along with him.

Nouhada said that he had been dispatched to perpetrate a suicide bombing by several men, including Atzam Ziad, an Islamic Jihad terrorist from Silat al-Khartiya, who was arrested on 8 April 2006 and admitted his involvement.

Armed with an AK-47, Nouhada was filmed by fellow terrorists as he read his will. He received the bomb, hidden in a bag, the evening before he was apprehended. He contacted a Palestinian from Silat al-Khartiya, who worked in transporting workers into Israel, and agreed with him regarding a trip into Israel the next day. 

Nouada left Yamun in a taxi at 06:00 on 21 March 2006. Upon reaching the Nablus area, with the bomb in his possession, he changed to a GMC van, with Israeli license plates, driven by Yasser Taleb Hashem Masri, a resident of the Old City of Jerusalem. 

Masri admitted to transporting 11 Palestinians, none of whom had permits, into Israel along a route that bypassed the security fence. From the Nablus region, he passed through the Hawara checkpoint without being checked, drove along the Ramallah bypass road, passed through the A-Zaim checkpoint without being checked, and turned onto the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway, heading west.

The vehicle was stopped near Sha’alavim by the ISA and Israel Police in the wake of a pinpoint warning regarding the intention to perpetrate a terrorist attack. 

Masri further admitted that he customarily drove illegal workers from Samaria into Israel approximately three times a week, in return for approximately NIS 200 per worker. He also admitted to working with the aforesaid Palestinian from Silat al-Khartiya on many occasions. Masri claimed that he was unaware that he was transporting a suicide terrorist on the day in question.

Nouada admitted to having previously worked illegally in recent years in Israel, in Usfiya and Daliat el-Carmel, for several employers, who, he claimed, were fully aware of his illegal status. He said that his brother was working for his employer from Usfiya. 

The employer was arrested on 21 March 2006. He told the ISA and Israel Police that he had been involved in employing and transporting illegal workers for some time, including two of Nouada’s brothers. At the time of his arrest, the employer was on probation for previous similar offenses. He has been indicted for employing, harboring and transporting Palestinians who lacked permits to be and/or work in Israel.

In recent years, since the completion of various parts of the security fence, terrorist organizations have made increasing use of Palestinians without such permits in order to perpetrate terrorist attacks inside Israel especially in light of their familiarity in both bypassing the security fence and with Israel in general. Those who transport such illegal Palestinians have played a significant part in the perpetration of very many terrorist attacks inside Israel; they exploit their Israeli citizenship in order to infiltrate Palestinians into Israel, through IDF checkpoints, in exchange for payment, while ignoring the high security risks involved. The courts have imposed severe sentences on those who transport suicide terrorists.