Bedouin Israeli met Hamas officials in Turkey, transferred funds to Gaza

Osama Alokbi is accused of transferring funds to the Gaza Strip, knowing that the money was used for digging terror tunnels for Hamas; he met Hamas officials in Turkey, including Hamas leader's deputy, Salah Al-Arouri, who was killed during the war in Lebanon.

An indictment was filed against Osama Alokbi, 54, a resident of the unrecognized village of Hura in the Negev, for contact with a foreign agent and property-related offenses for the purpose of terrorism. The defendant, an Israeli citizen born in Gaza, served as deputy manager of the Northern Islamic Movement branch in Hura from 2006 until it was outlawed in 2015. He also served as a preacher in mosques in villages and Bedouin authorities in the Negev.
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Alokbi was arrested last month, and the severe indictment filed against him indicates that he has been meeting Hamas members for a long time, including top figures in Turkey, while trying to cover his tracks. According to the Shin Bet security agency, during his last visit to Turkey, in June 2023, Alokbi participated in closed talks where he met both with a senior Hamas figure close to the leadership abroad and with Salah Al-Aruri, the deputy head of Hamas's political bureau, who was eliminated in Lebanon in January 2024.
According to the indictment, he received an envelope with money from a senior Hamas operative in one of his meetings in Turkey. Alokbi transferred money for an extended period to a Hamas member from Khan Younis, knowing that some of the money was being used for the construction of Hamas' terror tunnels.
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דובר צה"ל מציג את התיעוד של סינוואר
דובר צה"ל מציג את התיעוד של סינוואר
Osama Alokbi helped fund Hamas terror tunnels
(Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
In 2020, according to the indictment, his cousin, Mohammed Alokbi, who resides in Nuseirat in Gaza, contacted him. From that point on and for three years, he transferred money to his cousin in cash through a Gazan merchant, who had a permit to enter Israel.
Alokbi began transferring funds to a resident of Khan Younis, and in late 2023 the latter confessed to him that he was a Hamas activist. He also told him that the money he transferred to him was used, among other things, for digging tunnels for the terror organization. Despite these revelations, Alokbi continued to transfer money to him, and in total transferred about 60,000 shekels.
He received the money from donations collected in the mosques where he preached. According to the indictment, during his flights to Turkey, Alokbi made contact with a Hamas operative, who promised to financially assist him for the benefit of the Negev Bedouins. Alokbi met with a Hamas operative named Ibrahim Mashawi and tried to hide his connection with him by purchasing a Turkish SIM card.
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סאלח אל-עארורי
סאלח אל-עארורי
Hamas deputy head Saleh Al-Arouri met with Osama Alokbi in Turkey
During his trips to Turkey in June 2023, he received an envelope from Hamas operatives containing $15,000 for the Negev Bedouins. The Hamas activist told the defendant to take $1,000 for his personal use.
After realizing that he could not bring the cash he received into the country, he decided to transfer the envelope to another person and to raise the same amount in the country through donations in mosques. According to the indictment, the defendant asked his wife to accompany him to his meetings with Hamas activists to conceal the nature of those meetings.
According to the Shin Bet's statement: "Osama used his wife as a cover for a fake presentation of a romantic trip. During these meetings in Turkey, he raised funds from Hamas operatives for his activity in the Negev."
The indictment states that: "The defendant knowingly maintained contact with a foreign agent, and he also engaged in terrorism-related property offenses with the intention of promoting or funding severe terrorism, or with the aim of assisting in promoting or funding the activities of a terrorist organization."
As part of the investigation by the Shin Bet and the Negev Police Intelligence Unit, evidence was seized at his home, including evidence of support of Hamas ideology alongside evidence that he provided financial assistance to a Hamas activist in the Gaza Strip amounting to tens of thousands of shekels over the years. The Prosecutor's Office requested that the defendant be detained until the end of proceedings.
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