Earlier this week, an Israeli newspaper cited allegations by the country’s internal security service that the Palestinian militant group Hamas was training undercover operatives in Malaysia for attacks.
According to the report by Haaretz, Shin Bet had produced detailed evidence about how Hamas men in Malaysia actively recruited Palestinians students studying there for military training in an indictment filed last month. Recruiters allegedly put students through initial ideological preparation that includes joining the Muslim Brotherhood and local Palestinian charities before they undergo military training. These operatives are then deployed in various roles, including setting up military networks in the West Bank, acting as messengers and carrying out secret fund transfers for Hamas.
The allegation itself is not new. Last year, Israel claimed that a member of Hamas had trained in Malaysia to paraglide into Israeli territory to carry out murders and kidnapping. Malaysia, a Muslim-majority nation which does not have diplomatic relations with Israel and has often expressed support for the Palestinian cause, denied this allegation at the time. However, this is the first time that Shin Bet has offered more details in court papers to back up that earlier assertion.
Hamas has reportedly dismissed the recent accusation as baseless.
“The Shin Bet’s accusations…are baseless; they are mere lies,” the group said in a statement. “The Israeli accusations are aimed at preventing West Bank [Palestinian] students from traveling abroad to pursue their students and providing a justification for their arrest upon their return,” it added.
Malaysia, for its part, does not seem convinced by the new evidence. Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar told The Malaysian Insider that Israel was simply manufacturing reasons to oppose the country.
“This is ridiculous, they are creating reasons to oppose Malaysia,” Wan Junaidi said. “You know this is what they [Israel] always do, when they dislike a country…”
Separately, Malaysia’s police Khalid Abu Bakar also denied the allegation that Palestinian students were being recruited for such activities.
“We strongly deny this wild accusation. However, we can confirm that Palestinians are here for their formal education in many universities, just as their fellow countrymen are doing in other countries,” Khalid told The Sun.
Source : The Diplomat
Hamas fighter revealed he was trained in Malaysia
A Hamas fighter under remand by Israeli authorities revealed that he was trained in Malaysia to carry out cross-border attacks using powered parachute, according to report by the Jerusalem Post.
The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) said the suspect, a Hamas cell commander captured in Khan Younis (a city in the southern Gaza Strip), told interrogators the training was part of Hamas’ preparations to oppose an Israel Defence Force (IDF) ground offensive in the Gaza Strip.
The suspect is reported to have joined Hamas in 2007 and became a part of its military wing known as Izzadin Kassam.
He reportedly travelled to Malaysia in 2012, where he and nine other Hamas members learned how to fly a powered parachute.
Shin Bet said he joined Hamas’s reserves unit in the same year, which was tasked with special operations during wartime.
In 2013, he joined an elite cell where he received a Kalashnikov or better known as the AK-47 to carry with him at all times.
He was later trained to use M-16 rifles, rocket-propelled grenades and bombs and was taught how to kidnap soldiers, and tunnel warfare.
Source : Astro
Hamas Terror Cell Received Advanced Training in Malaysia
Shin Bet investigation reveals that Hamas terrorists received training in Malaysia and Gaza to infiltrate Israel by air to kidnap and murder Israelis.
In 2010, the prisoner was enlisted into a special force sent to Malaysia for parachute training, in preparation for a cross-border kidnapping attack on Israel. He and ten other terrorists from across Gaza spent a week receiving training in Malaysia.
After returning to Gaza, the cell was given additional weapons training. They were warned to maintain secrecy, and not to reveal details of their Malaysian training to anyone.
Preparing the attack
In 2014, four years after being sent to Malaysia, the Hamas commando squad was summoned for more parachute training. This time the training took place inside the Gaza Strip. According to the prisoner, the squad was not told about where the kidnapping attack would take place.
The prisoner told investigators about a Hamas training camp that took place in June of this year. Exercises involved training with handguns, Kalashnikovs, M-16s, RPGs, machine guns and demolitions training. Terrorists who attended the camp were trained in various methods for kidnapping soldiers and how to operate inside Hamas’ extensive tunnel network. The prisoner was meant to attend such a course after Ramadan (late July). Ultimately, he was arrested by IDF soldiers operating in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge.
The details of the ISA investigation reveal the great efforts and resources that Hamas invested in bolstering its military capabilities including the building and training of a standing commando army to attack and kidnap Israeli soldiers and civilians.
Hamas goes to incredible lengths to carry out attacks against Israel. That is why the IDF will not rest in its mission to dismantle the organization’s terrorist infrastructure and keep the people of Israel safe.
Source : IDF
Malaysia Rejects Israeli Claims About Hamas Training
Malaysia’s flatly denied an Israeli newspaper article alleging that Hamas has been training Palestinians on Malaysian soil to carry out anti-Israeli military operations, a local publication reported.
“This is ridiculous, they are creating reasons to oppose Malaysia,” Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar told The Malaysian Insider (TMI). “You know this is what they [Israel] always do, when they dislike a country….”
“In fact, we [have] never trained military or militants here,” he added.
Wan Junaidi was commenting on a report published a day earlier by the Israeli paper Haaretz.
It cited court allegations by Shin Bet, one of Israel’s security services, that Hamas was training “operatives in paragliding techniques in Malaysia.”
Last year, Israeli officials came out with a similar statement, saying Hamas was conducting such training on Malaysian soil.
Tuesday’s report in Haaretz mentioned intelligence obtained by Israeli officials through the interrogation of a Hamas operative, who had been captured during the Israeli invasion of the Gaza Strip last July.
Later, Israel claimed that the prisoner “had trained in Malaysia to paraglide into Israeli territory to carry out murder and kidnappings,” the newspaper reported.
But Malaysia’s government rejected those allegations.
What is different about the latest allegations is that Shin Bet offered more details in court papers to back up the earlier Israeli assertion, according to Haaretz.
Hamas, a Palestinian militant group and longtime foe of Israel, is on the U.S. State Department’s list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, but Malaysia is on record as expressing sympathy for the group and the cause of Palestinian statehood.
The Malaysian government has no diplomatic ties with the Jewish State but sends economic, humanitarian and other aid to the Palestinian Authority, which governs Gaza and the West Bank.
In response to the earlier Israeli allegations, Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said in August that Malaysia had never cooperated with Hamas or other pro-Palestinian groups “other than in diplomacy, trade and culture,” according to TMI.
Hamas’s presence in Malaysia
Shin Bet’s detailed allegations were contained in an indictment filed last month in the Judea Military Court against Waseem Qawasmeh, a 24-year-old resident of Hebron who had studied at the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) in Kuala Lumpur, Haaretz reported.
Israeli authorities arrested Qawasmeh in February as he returned home from Malaysia via Jordan. He stands charged of being an active member of a group banned by Israel, and making contact with and receiving money from an enemy, according to the Israeli paper.
“According to the Shin Bet, Hamas men in Malaysia actively recruit for military training Palestinians who are studying there. Recruiters also put the students through ideological preparation that includes joining the Muslim Brotherhood and Palestinian charities that operate there,” the article said.
“After their training, the operatives are sent to set up military networks in the West Bank, act as messengers between the territories and foreign countries, and carry out secret transfers of funds to meet Hamas’ needs,” it added.
Haaretz went on to report that Qawasmeh became associated with Hamas through its student association at IIUM.
He spent two years working for a Hamas charity and then was recruited to join the Muslim Brotherhood. Senior Hamas officials living in Malaysia attended Qawasmeh’s induction into the brotherhood, the paper said.
After Haaretz published its report, Hamas officials rejected it.
“The Shin Bet’s accusations… are baseless; they are mere lies,” the group said in a statement on Tuesday, according to World Bulletin.
“The Israeli accusations are aimed at preventing West Bank [Palestinian] students from traveling abroad to pursue their studies and providing a justification for their arrest upon their return,” Hamas added.
In Malaysia, Police Inspector-General Khalid Abu Bakar also strongly denied the allegations contained in the newspaper’s report.
“Even if there are Palestinians who came to study in local universities, they came as Palestinian students to pursue regular studies at any university,” he told SinarTV, a Malaysian channel, on Tuesday.
No individuals or groups provide any form of military training to Hamas or to Palestinians studying in Malaysia, he added.