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Sami Abu Zuhri Photo: AP
Sami Abu Zuhri Photo: AP

Hamas spokesman caught smuggling cash

(VIDEO) Sami Abu Zuhri caught in Rafah with belt containing hundreds of thousands of Euros. Money confiscated by Palestinian security officials Abu Zahari refusing to leave without cash, while Hamas gunmen gathering around crossing, demanding money is returned

Ali Waked
Published: 05.19.06, 12:35 / Israel News

VIDEO - Hamas' spokesman in Gaza, Sami Abu Zuhri, has been caught Friday morning in the Rafah crossing between Egypt and Gaza with a large quantity of money he attempted to smuggle into Gaza.


Gunmen on Gaza streets (Photo: Reuters)  


According to one report, Abu Zuhri, who is one of the senior leaders of Hamas in Gaza, had Euro 640,000 on his person. Another report claimed he held a larger sum of Euro 900,000 Euro.


Hamas members in Rafah (Photo: AFP)


The money was discovered by European monitors on the border and confiscated by Palestinian security officials. The cash was hidden in a special belt worn by Abu Zuhri, and while trying to cross the border, the belt fell, and the money was uncovered by the monitors.


Abu Zahri left the Rafat junction without money he attempted to smuggle.


Other Hamas senior officials are continuing to negotiation with Palestinian security officials in an attempt to convince them to hand over the money taken.


Earlier, Abu Zuhri refused to leave the crossing without the money.


According to an agreement reached through mediation by the United States, Palestinians interested in crossing Rafah with large quantities of money are obligated to inform Palestinian forces and European monitors 24 hours ahead of time. They must also show where the money came from. Abu Zuhri did not fulfill any of the conditions.


Dozens of Hamas Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades gunmen have surrounded the crossing, and are demanding that Abu Zuhri be released together with the money.


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