(Communicated by Israeli security sources)
During a joint IDF and ISA arrest operation in Jenin overnight, a special IDF force surrounded a structure where several wanted Palestinians were located. Two armed gunmen attempted to escape the building. When the force identified them trying to escape, they opened fire at the force. In the ensuing exchanges of fire the two gunmen, Khaled Hussein and Mahmoud Jawabreh, were killed.
The force then found rifles, bombs, grenades, military vests and ammunition in the possession of the gunmen. An IDF officer was lightly injured during the exchanges of fire. Six wanted terror operatives were arrested in the Jenin operation.
Khaled Reik Mahamed Hussein, born in 1982 and originally from Tulkarem, was a senior Islamic Jihad operative in northern Samaria. He was imprisoned between 2001 and 2006 for membership in a terror cell which planned shooting attacks against Israeli civilians. Following his release he returned to terrorist activity and established a cell with other Islamic Jihad operatives from the Tulkarem area. After several months the cell transferred its activity to the Jenin area.
Khaled Hussein was responsible for the execution of an attempted suicide attack on July 13, which was thwarted at the Anabta checkpoint, east of Tulkarem. Muhammad Omer Mahmud Diab, a wanted terrorist from the Islamic Jihad terror organization, arrived at the checkpoint and opened fire at the soldiers manning it. The force returned fire and killed the gunman. Three large explosive devices were uncovered in Diab’s vehicle, which indicated an intention to carry out an attack against Israeli civilians or soldiers. Khaled Hussein was also in contact with the Islamic Jihad’s headquarters in Syria and was involved in attempts to execute additional suicide attacks.
Mahmoud Jawabreh, born in 1987, originally from Kafr Rai, southwest of Jenin, was an Islamic Jihad operative who was also imprisoned, in the years 2005-2006. Jawabreh was jailed for membership of the Islamic Jihad terrorist activity and for organizing terrorist activity in his village.
In this role, he sought to recruit terror operatives for the organization. After his release, he returned to his involvement with the Islamic Jihad and worked with Hussein in order to execute further terrorist attacks. Mahmoud Jawabreh was a friend of Muhammad Diab and apparently involved in the planning and execution of the thwarted attack at the Anabta checkpoint.