Ominous. Yadlin
Photo: Haim Zach

Intelligence chief: Terror groups planning Independence Day attack

Major-General Amos Yadlin briefs cabinet on situation in Gaza Strip, warns Palestinian terror organizations may try to carry out mass-casualty attack during Israel's 60th anniversary celebrations

Military Intelligence Chief Major-General Amos Yadlin warned the cabinet Tuesday of terror organizations seeking to carry out a major terror attack during Independence Day.


The Israel Defense Forces, he said, "has intelligence indicating terrorists might try to mimic the Passover attack, including the possible abductions of IDF soldiers."


On the eve of the holiday, a Palestinian terror cell detonated a car bomb near the Kerem Shalom crossing, in a failed infiltration attempt. Thirteen IDF soldiers were wounded in the attack.


Yadlin briefed the cabinet on the situation in the Gaza Strip at the request of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Hamas, he told the ministers "wants to break the blockade on Gaza and since Egypt is determined to stop that from happening on its side, Hamas will try to carry out another attack similar to the one on Kerem Shalom."


The terror groups, he stressed, are likely to target the Gaza crossings: "It's an operational opportunity for them to hurt both soldiers and civilians… They'll target everything they can along the Hubers Route, including digging tunnels, laying explosives and carrying out shooting attacks.


The Hubers Route runs along Israel's security fence with the Gaza Strip, from the Mediterranean to the Philadelphi Route; and includes Israel's four major crossings with the Strip – the Erez crossing in its north, the Sufa and Karni crossings in its central and Kerem Shalom in its south.


Yadlin went on to say that "Hamas is not interested in any kind of truce. As far as they are concerned a hudna last five to 10 years, but they are asking much more for it than the moderate Palestinians are asking for a peace treaty."


Hamas is lacking dominant leadership, he added, and while "the political wing leads and the military wing does as it's told, the leadership per se is weak…


"(Hamas politburo chief) Khaled Mashaal said so himself – 'We need the time to regroup' – and even if Egypt and Hamas come to some sort of an understanding, they still need the approval of the Palestinian factions in Cairo."


פרסום ראשון: 04.29.08, 15:50
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