A report this week has alleged that Lebanese terror group Hezbollah has been working intensively in the West Bank to enlist former operatives from Fatah’s armed wing, the Al Aqsa Brigades, in order to carry out terror attacks against Israeli targets in the West Bank and inside Israel.
Saudi daily Okaz quoted a Palestinian security source as saying on Sunday that “among those Hezbollah members involved in the operation is Kayis Ubayid, who was behind the kidnapping of Col. (res.) Elahanan Tenebaum in 2000″. Tenenbaum was released to Israel from Hezbollah captivity as part of a prisoner exchange in 2004.
Hezbollah is reportedly promising economic support in exchange for their work in this operation, and large numbers of youths are said have joined the scheme, tempted by the incentive of money from Hezbollah.
The Palestinian security source also expressed concern at the willingness of youths to work for the Lebanese Shi’ite group, claiming it causes a security problem for the Palestinian Authority.
This scheme is reminiscent of a similar undertaking of Hezbollah in 2004-2005 where Palestinians who committed terror attacks against Israel were funded in the tens-of-thousands of US dollars per month by Hezbollah.
Hezbollah and Iran’s strong relationship remains intact, with Iranian Defense Minister Hussein Dehghan asserting in January that the Islamic Republic would remain arming the West Bank and Hezbollah “in order to deal with the Zionist entity”.
In recent weeks, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has also reiterated his vow that the country will “take all possible means to support anyone who fights Israel”.