In a statement Thursday night, Israel’s security agency, the Shin Bet, announced that it had foiled a plan by a Hamas terrorist cell to assassinate Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman using RPG missiles. The members of the cell, brothers Ibrahim el-Zir and Ziad el-Zir, and Adnan Tsabich, from the West Bank, were indicted Tuesday.
Haaretz reported that the three men were charged with conspiracy to cause bodily harm and conspiracy to trade in armaments. During Operation Protective Edge, they approached senior Hamas terrorist Ibrahim Yusuf al-Sheikh for help obtaining a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) launcher. The plan was to target Liberman’s convoy as he travelled to and from his home to “send a message to Israel and end the war in Gaza,” the Shin Bet statement read. Liberman lives in Nokdim, an Israeli town not far from the villages where the three terrorists live.
According to The Jerusalem Post, the three were arrested back in August, when Ibrahim el-Zir was found trying to purchase the RPG launcher. They were held and questioned extensively, and finally charged this week. Israel National News reported that the military prosecutor filed charges in the Judea Military Court.
During the course of the investigation, Haaretz reported, an additional Hamas network was uncovered. It was found to be planning attacks in the Gush Etzion area. Earlier this month, Dalia Lemkus, 26, was killed in a terrorist stabbing at a bus stop in that same region.