'Kidnap plot' - Israel holds 4 since May

2012-08-20 21:49
A poster of the jailed secretary-general of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Ahmed Saadat. (Mohammed Abed, AFP)

A poster of the jailed secretary-general of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Ahmed Saadat. (Mohammed Abed, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Jerusalem - Israel has been holding four Palestinian militants since May on suspicion of plotting to kidnap Israelis for use as bargaining chips for their jailed leader, the security service said on Monday.

The Shin Bet statement ended a protracted media blackout on the arrest of the four members of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

"In May, Shin Bet agents, backed by the army and police, arrested an armed PFLP cell that was preparing to kidnap Israelis for use as bargaining chips to secure the release of Palestinian prisoners," the statement said.

It said the four were suspected of plotting to seize "soldiers or settlers" with the aim of securing the release of jailed PFLP leader Ahmed Saadat.

It said the four were charged with illegal possession of weapons before a military court, which remanded them in custody until trial.

The Shin Bet statement said that Saadat was jailed in Israel for his "involvement in several terrorist attacks, notably the murder of [Tourism] Minister Rehavam Zeevi".

In fact, Israeli prosecutors dropped charges against the PFLP leader of involvement in the October 2001 murder in annexed Arab east Jerusalem of the far-right Zeevi.

A military court in December 2008 sentenced Saadat to 30 years in prison for heading a "terrorist organisation".

Palestinian MP

Saadat had been seized by Israeli forces in a controversial 2006 raid on a Palestinian prison in the West Bank town of Jericho where he was being held under British and US supervision.

Then Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat had detained him in January 2002 as one of Israel's conditions for lifting a siege on his West Bank headquarters in Ramallah.

His detention came after the PFLP claimed the killing of Zeevi, an ultra rightwinger who supported the ideology of "transfer," which would see all Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip expelled to neighbouring Arab countries.

While in prison, Saadat was elected to the Palestinian parliament in January 2006.

The PFLP leader was among several high-profile Palestinian prisoners who were excluded from an exchange last year in which hundreds were freed in return for the release by Gaza militants of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Saadat has been held in solitary confinement for extended periods and has gone on hunger strike more than once.

Read more on:    palestine  |  israel

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


13 summer safety tips

Summer time and the burning is easy. Get some great tips to ensure sunburn doesn't spoil your holiday!


I love summer.24

Stay in shape this summer
Ultimate fails compilation 2014
This sleeping bulldog is you during the holidays
This man's reaction to his Christmas present is priceless!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off the bestselling books

Save big on the most captivating reads of 2014. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


You are in an innovative mood and may want to break out and do your own thing today. The Moon moves into Aries which emphasizes...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.