by Ido Ben Porat
Hamas terrorists transferred funds to Judea, Samaria by offsetting debts between money changers, using minimal cash.
Yesterday (Tuesday), an IDF operation in collaboration with Shin Bet forces, took place in order to expose a money transfer network in the area of the "Benyamin" and "Ephraim" regional brigades in Judea and Samaria.
The operation exposed a money transfer network from the Gaza Strip to Ramallah, which operated in coordination between senior Hamas officials in the Gaza Strip and their Hamas operatives in Judea and Samaria. The network was operated by a civilian traveling and passport issuing agency named "Al-Haramain", owned by the Hani brothers and Firas Blbiesi, along with a money exchanger named Mohammad Swesi, who all operate from the Gaza Strip.
The exposed network operated under the guise of a civilian organization in an attempt to conceal the money's origin and destination. The money was transferred using the "Hawwalah" method, a money transfer system implemented by offsetting debts between a number of independent money changers, while using a minimal amount of cash, and hence not requiring registration in the world banking systems. The large amounts of money transferred through this method were used for organizational terror activity and for funding the salaries of Hamas operatives.
As part of the operation, IDF troops along with Shin Bet forces apprehended three suspects who are operatives of this Hamas-run infrastructure.
Ibrahim Mzfr-A Mazari’ - Al-Nubani resident, a Hamas operative and a former prisoner.
Khaled Mzfr A Mazari’ (Ibrahim's brother) - Al-Nubani resident, a Hamas operative.
Mohammad Abu Salim- A Rantis resident, a Hamas operative and a former prisoner.
Following the money transfer from the Gaza Strip into Judea and Samaria, IDF and Shin Bet forces have strengthened enforcement measures against civilian companies cooperating with terror organizations in the area and in the Gaza Strip.
An officer in the Intelligence Directorate, Lt. Col. A, said.: "The methods used by Hamas for money transfer are familiar to us and we are operating to thwart and disrupt them in cooperation with the Shin Bet."
"The IDF will continue to operate in order to ensure the safety of Israeli civilians using all the measures available to us."
Ido Ben Porat
Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter