||Seizing of the Abu Hasan
May 22, 2003
On May 21, 2003 Israeli naval commandos intercepted a fishing boat, the Abu Hasan, sailing from Lebanon to Egypt carrying a Hizbullah explosives expert bound for Gaza. Also seized were CD disks with instructions on how to assemble bomb belts for suicide bombers, a radio-activation system for remote-control bombs and 25 detonators for Kassam rockets.
As part of the IDF ongoing war on terror emanating from the seas, special navy forces conducted a search on a vessel moving suspiciously in the waters west of Haifa. On the vessel the forces found suspicious objects and evidence of the transfer of know-how and directives for carrying out terror attacks. Recently, the IDF and security forces are required to deal with a great increase in terror activity from the sea. This increase manifests itself in attempts to smuggle weapons into the Gaza Strip, terrorist attempts to penetrate from the sea to carry out attacks on Israeli civilians and IDF forces, and attempts to attack Israeli vessels.
|The Abu Hasan seized by naval commandos
||Terror-related materials offloaded from the Abu Hasan
Previous notable incidents:
March 16, 2003 – the detention of a merchant ship:
Within the framework of routine checks of vessels arriving at Israeli sea ports conducted by sraeli Navy, the ship "Laertis," sailing under the flag of the Marshall Islands was checked. Two hidden passengers with Iraqi citizenship were discovered on board.
Jan. 17, 2003 – Identification of a bomb-laden raft near the Gaza coast:
An INS "Daboor" that on a regular security patrol along the northern Gaza Strip observed an object that appeared to be a life raft in a buffer area closed to vessels. Sailors of the "Daboor", who checked the object according to procedures, fired a warning shot into the air and afterwards towards the raft, which proved to be booby-trapped and subsequently exploded.
Nov. 23, 2002 – The bomb-laden fishing boat event:
At approximately 10:30 p.m. the Navy control post in the Gaza Strip identified a Palestinian fishing vessel that had crossed the water boundaries in the direction of Israel, and was sailing in the buffer area where it is forbidden to sail. An INS "Daboor" on a regular security patrol was called in order to identify and investigate the fishing boat. After several attempts to communicate with the fishing boat there was an explosion in which three sailors were moderately injured and an additional sailor was lightly hurt.
Aug. 4, 2002 – Prevented infiltration into an Israeli community in the northern Gaza Strip:
A Navy observation post identified an armed terrorist who was exiting the sea in a diving suit and approaching an Israeli community. An IDF force identified the terrorist and opened fire towards him, killing him. A Kalashnikov assault rifle (AK-47) was found on the corpse of the terrorist, along with eight grenades, four ammunition clips, two oxygen tanks, a gage and fins.
June 8, 2002 – Prevented infiltration into Israeli territory in the northern Gaza Strip:
The Navy control post in the northern Gaza Strip identified during the night two terrorists swimming near the community of Dugit in an attempt to infiltrate Israeli territory. IDF forces opened fire towards the terrorists. In searches conducted on the beach, the corpse of one of the terrorists was found, and near it a bag containing four fragmentation grenades, a Kalashnikov assault rifle and four ammunition clips.
Jan. 3, 2002 – Capture of the ship, "Karine A":
Naval forces, in a joint operation, captured the ship, "Karine A," that was sailing in international waters on its way to the Suez Canal. The ship intended to ferry the weapons to the Palestinian Naval Police near the Gaza coast. The 13-person crew included members of the Palestinian Authority.
The many weapons on the ship, which was owned by the Palestinian Authority, were supplied by Iranian organizations and the Hizbullah, and placed in special sealed containers. In the hull of the ship, more than 100 Lau missiles were discovered, along with 20 rockets, dozens of mortar launchers of various range, hundreds of mortar bombs, dozens of mines, sniper rifles, machine guns and assault rifles, two rubber boats and two complete underwater diving apparatuses.
May 7, 2001 – Capturing the ship "Santorini":
During a routine air reconnaissance conducted by naval reconnaissance aircraft west of the Israeli coast, a vessel that was moving suspiciously was discovered. Naval forces that were alerted commandeered the vessel that was on its way from Lebanon to the Gaza Strip, in order to smuggle weapons. After being brought to Israel, a large wide variety of weaponry was discovered, including land -to-air missiles RPGs, mortar bombs, mines, guns and ammunition. The group responsible for sending the ship was Ahmed Jibril’s Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.