Hamas Claims to Capture IDF Soldier, Revealed as Palestinian Collaborator

By Yoni Weiss

An Israeli tank seen near the Israel-Gaza border, southern Israel. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)

In May, Hamas announced the capture of an individual they claimed was an Israeli soldier. However, the man in the photograph released by Hamas was later identified as Halil Dawas, a resident of the Aqbat Jaber refugee camp near Yericho. The IDF quickly denied that any of its soldiers had been captured.

Palestinian media outlets later reported that Dawas was suspected of collaborating with Israel. Despite numerous arrests, residents of Aqbat Jaber maintained that these detentions were efforts to clear Dawas of the suspicion that he had provided Israeli forces with the identities of Hamas terrorists in the camp.

Dawas had been held under administrative detention, a procedure where authorities can detain individuals without charge or trial, typically on security grounds, for extended periods. The charges against him were sealed, according to Palestinian Authority security forces. They also suggested that Dawas had likely escaped to Israel to avoid being taken into custody.

A resident of Aqbat Jaber commented on the situation, saying, “He hasn’t been in the camp or in Yericho for a long time. There are many rumors about him — that he is in Gaza and helping the IDF. We saw his picture, which proves he helped the IDF.”

Adding to the controversy, a Hamas spokesperson claimed the group had captured an IDF uniform, ammunition, communication devices, and a Czech Scorpion rifle, a type of weapon reportedly used by special IDF units. These claims have added another layer of complexity to the story, fueling speculation and rumors within the community.

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