Prosecutors on Monday indicted three Israeli Arab residents of Umm el-Faham on charges of planning terror activities against Israeli security officers and civilians. Among the attacks they planned was a shooting attack on Har HaBayis, similar to the one that took place in July and led to weeks of rioting by Arabs. The three were Muhammad Jabarin, 20, Amad Jabarin, 20, and a 17-year-old accomplice. Other arrests are expected.
The attacks were to be carried out on behalf of the Islamic State terror group, investigators said. Charges included conspiracy to commit acts of terror, conspiracy to commit murder, belonging to an illegal organization, contact with foreign agents, and other security related charges.
The three were arrested in recent weeks, the Shin Bet security agency said in a statement. The indictments were the culmination of an investigation by the Shin Bet, Israel Police and the IDF. Plans for the attack on Har HaBayis were at an advanced stage, and were uncovered by intelligence work by the three organizations, the statement said.
Besides the Har HaBayis attack, the terrorists were in the midst of planning similar attacks at synagogues, churches and other public sites. The terror gang had acquired weapons to carry out the attacks. In addition, they had acquired a vehicle, which they planned to use to carry out car ramming attacks against IDF soldiers at checkpoints, bus stops and the like.
Umm el-Faham, an Israeli-Arab town in the center of the country, has been a hotbed of terror activity in recent years. Just last month, investigators arrested Dar’am Jabbarin, an Israeli Arab from Umm el-Faham, for his participation in a terrorist money-laundering operation on behalf of Hamas in affiliation with a Turkish company. Arrested along with Jabbarin was Kamil Takli, a senior lecturer on legal issues from Turkey. The two were arrested in Israel after numerous trips to and from Turkey, admitting that they had ferried cash to Hamas terrorists from Turkey. They had been recruited in Turkey by Zahar Jabarin, a senior Hamas terrorist who was among those released from an Israeli prison in exchange for Gilad Shalit in 2011. Under questioning, they revealed a tale of assistance and support of Hamas and its terrorist activities organized on Turkish territory, sometimes with the assistance of individuals in the Turkish government.