The Shin Bet security service revealed Tuesday afternoon that they broke up a number of terror cells in Israel led by the Hezbollah terrorist organization.
Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, from the group’s Unit 133 — its foreign operations unit — recruited the would-be terrorists through social media sites, the Shin Bet security service says.
These terror cells had planned to carry out suicide bombings, a shooting, and to ambush IDF patrols in Yehudah and Shomron. They received funding from Hezbollah, and some members had begun preparing explosive devices for use in these attacks, the Shin Bet said.
This is the second time Hezbollah-directed cells were uncovered in Yehudah and Shomron since October 2015.
According to the Shin Bet, who busted the cells along with the IDF and police, Hezbollah has been working diligently in recent years to recruit operatives in Yehudah and Shomron, Gaza, and in Israel “proper” to carry out terror attacks against Israeli targets.
Among the groups arrested in the Shin Bet operation announced on Tuesday were a cell from Kalkilya which was ordered to carry out an attack on an IDF patrol.
The cell’s 18-year-old leader, Mustafa Kamel Hindi, was recruited by Hezbollah handlers through social media and was given instructions through email, according to the Shin Bet. Hindi recruited four local Kalkilya men to join his terror group.
The cell was arrested in June, before they were able to carry out a shooting attack, which they had trained for, on an IDF patrol. The suspects were indicted at the Military Court in Yehudah.
Separately, a Hezbollah operative in Gaza, Muhammad Faiz Abu Jadian, recruited operatives to carry out suicide attacks across Yehudah and Shomron, the Shin Bet said.
The operatives were also reached through social media, and further instructions were delivered through secret email accounts. Most of the terrorists received encryption programs through email.
The Shin Bet notes that Hezbollah has also reached out to Arab Israelis in recent months through social media. The attempts to recruit Arab Israelis were made through pro-Palestinian online profiles. After an exchange of direct messages, the offer to join the ranks of the organization was made, the Shin Bet stated.
Hezbollah’s unsuccessful attempts to build a terror infrastructure in Yehudah and Shomron have been made from afar and the organization has attempted to conceal its involvement in terrorist activities in the region, according to the Shin Bet.