Haifa customs workers on Tuesday seized a shipment of 4,000 dolls bound for the Palestinian Authority that are in the form of a Palestinian terrorist “shaheed” (martyr) holding a knife or rock. The dolls were found hidden in a shipment of household items and toys. The dolls’ recipient, an Israeli shipping and transfer company, is being questioned as to the source of the shipment.
The dolls, dressed in the style of a rock- and firebomb-throwing Palestinian terrorist, were decked out with a PA flag, and a checked keffiyah (Arab headdress). Some of the dolls were wearing scarves with an image of the Al-Aqsa mosque, which PA chief Mahmoud Abbas has accused Israel of trying to “steal.” Israeli officials who saw the dolls said that they were “incitement brought to a new level; designed to continue brainwashing innocent children with hatred of Israel and preparing them to get themselves killed to fulfill the power fantasies of Palestinian terror group heads.”
Along with the dolls, several cases of para-military equipment – such as soles for military boots, plastic items, unadorned uniforms that authorities suspect were to be finished in sewing sweatshops in PA-controlled areas, and other items apparently meant for Palestinian terrorist groups were seized in the shipment.
Under international treaties signed by Israel and the PA, Israeli ports accept international shipment deliveries on behalf of the Palestinian Authority and collect customs duties from importers, which they subsequently transfer to the PA. On several occasions, however, Israel has used some of those funds to pay bills the PA owes Israeli companies, such as the PA’s unpaid electric bill from the Israel Electric Corporation, after the amount grew to over $400 million.
Koby Yahav, director of the Haifa customs office, said that his office “will continue in its daily efforts to prevent the smuggling of contraband to Israel, especially contraband that can be used for military purposes and incitement, especially during this period.”