Israel seizes Ali Express packages containing contraband
Border Crossings Authority, Gaza District Coordination and Liaison seize packages coming through Erez Border Crossing into Gaza containing 'bi-usage' items such as drones, night vision goggles, two-way radios that may be used for terrorism; packages shipped by online shopping sites such as Ali Express.
The Ministry of Defense's Border Crossings Authority and the Gaza District Coordination and Liaison (DCL) seized at the Erez Border Crossing hundreds of packages from online shopping sites such as Ali Express containing products that may be used for terrorism. The packages are suspected of having being intended to be delivered to the strip's terrorist organizations.
Upon inspection, some of the packages were found to contain drones and laser binoculars and sights. Hundreds of packages pass through the Erez Crossing—operated by the Border Crossings Authority—every day on their way to Gaza.
Every package moving from Israel to Gaza undergoes security screening. In the past few weeks, security officials have noticed certain elements within the strip taking advantage of online shopping sites, including leading international purveyor Ali Express, to smuggle contraband into Gaza under the guise of supposedly innocent shipments.
The Ministry of Defense noted among the products seized in the crossing during October alone were drones, telescopes, binoculars, laser sights, metal detectors, two-way radios, camouflage items, minute motors, night vision goggles, special cameras, weapon parts, knives and more.
The above items are defined as "bi-usage" items by the security establishment, or items that may have civilian uses but may also be used in carrying out terrorist attacks. These items are therefore seized by DCL personnel, part of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories' office, whenever they are found.
Some of the items seized may also have been used to construct improvised weapons, security sources said.
Other items found in Ali Express packages recently include motherboards and electronic circuit boards, voltage converters, wind gauges, ammeters, devices to cut optic cables, optic enlargement devices, minute electric drills, professional head flashlights, voltage stabilizers, power supplies, optic connectors and more.
The current seizure was not the first time terrorist organizations attempted to purchase armaments through Ali Express. After the assassination of Mohammad al-Zawahri, a Tunisian engineer working for Hamas's military wing, it was published the drone engine he had developed was sold on both ebay and Ali Express.
According to research by the Intelli Times blog, the engine, a DLE11 model, was sold on Ali Express for $594 and on ebay for $575.