Shin Bet Head: 400 Terror Attacks Prevented in 2017

Head of Shin Bet security service Nadav Argaman. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

While, baruch Hashem, there have not been mass terror attacks of late, it’s not for terrorists’ lack of trying, said Nadav Argaman, director of the Shin Bet. Over the past year, the Shin Bet has, b’chasdei Shamayim, actively stopped some 400 terror attacks, including 13 suicide bombing attacks and eight attempted kidnappings. Over 1,100 “lone wolf” terrorists were arrested before they were able to carry out attacks. There were 54 such attacks this year, compared to 108 in 2016.

In an end-of-year summation, Argaman said that “the Palestinian arena is very unstable, both in Gaza and in Yehudah and Shomron. Certainly after the declaration by President Trump recognizing Yerushalayim as Israel’s capital, things have become more difficult. Hamas is trying with all its strength to carry out attacks in Yehudah and Shomron and to destabilize the Palestinian Authority. In Gaza, meanwhile, the situation is more challenging than ever.”

While security forces were able to foil many more terror attacks than in the past, the fact that there are so many attacks is worrying, Argaman said. Besides preventing terror on the ground, he added, the organization has had great success in preventing attacks on Israel’s computer networks, and in preventing cyberspying and cyberterror attacks.

Overnight Motzoei Shabbos, security officials said they arrested three wanted security suspects in Yehudah and Shomron. The suspects were wanted for participating in rioting and throwing stones and firebombs that endangered Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers. Several of the suspects were also charged with belonging to Hamas. All were being questioned on their activities by security forces.