Report: 8 UNRWA Employees Arrested by Israel Over Ties to Hamas

By Yoni Weiss

View of an UNRWA bag at a weapons production site found by the IDF in Khan Yunis, Jan. 31. (Israel Defense Forces/Handout via REUTERS)

Eight UNRWA employees working in the Gaza Strip have been arrested by the IDF due to connections to Hamas, according to a report by Maariv on Thursday.

The report, which cites a secret document that has been obtained by Maariv, claimed that the employees have circumstantial evidence linking them directly with Hamas, and they have been transferred to Israel for further investigation.

The report also highlighted that UNRWA has reached out to Israel and has requested access to contact the arrested individuals.

The actual arrest of the employees was reported to have spanned over the past few months of fighting, from October until February. One of the detainees is even suspected of participating in the massacre that Hamas conducted on Oct. 7, according to Maariv.

According to the secret document, UNRWA made an appeal a few days ago to relevant political parties in Israel, including a detailed list of the eight detainees, while the management of the U.N. requested information about the detained employees of the organization, where they are being detained, the status of the investigation against them, and whether their affiliation to Hamas and terrorist activities has been proven.

Israeli officials have emphasized that the appeals by UNRWA and the U.N. are yet to be answered, and the investigation of the eight detainees is still ongoing.

UNRWA’s appeal comes following Israel’s campaign to remove the organization from Gaza.

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