|The Shabak (General Security Service), IDF and Israel Police thwarted a plot to place a bomb in a restaurant in Raanana, with the arrest of a gang of terrorists from the Tul Karem region, east of Netanya.
The Al-Aqsa Brigades terrorists planned to get the five-kilogram bomb into Israel with the help of Varud Kassem, a resident of Tira, and her cousin Mahmed Bubli of Shechem. Bubli was residing illegally in Israel, and at one time worked in the targeted restaurant.
Kassem, the Israeli-Arab in question, was arrested earlier this month at the supermarket in central Israel in which she worked. She told Shabak interrogators that she was in contact with Al-Aqsa terrorists over the past several months, and even visited them in the Shomron several times.
Kassem was asked to help the Palestinian terrorist cause by finding weapons dealers and transporting arms back and forth between the Shomron and pre-'67 Israel. Kassem was also asked to transfer the bomb in question and find an appropriate spot for its detonation.
Kassem agreed, and arrived several days later at Hawara, near Shechem and Yitzhar, for the purpose of bringing the bomb to Ramallah. Utilizing her Israeli-licensed car to ease passage through IDF checkpoints, she took the bomb and a terrorist named Yakub to Ramallah. After several failed attempts to bring the bomb into mainland Israel - including a refusal to do so by Kassem herself, who said that cars entering mainland Israel are checked - the bomb was finally hidden near Ramallah.
Israeli security forces received a tip-off as to its whereabouts, found and neutralized the bomb, and made the arrests.
Kassem also confessed to having been photographed in Ramallah several weeks ago, holding a gun and a Koran, and to having known about another Al-Aqsa plot to kidnap a Jewish resident of the Shomron.
The IDF's firm attempts to fight the phenomenon of illegal Palestinian Authority aliens in Israel are well understood in light of cases like the one at hand. The terror groups in Judea and Samaria have trouble carrying out terror attacks in Israeli territory, and therefore often seek the help of illegal aliens, who are very familiar with sites in - and access routes to - pre-'67 Israel. Israeli-Arabs, as well, are often sought for this purpose.