Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) and police brought charges on Friday against a Be'er Sheva area Bedouin was who was arrested four weeks ago for plotting to contact Al Qaeda terrorists and suggesting to a friend to carry out a suicide bombing. A gag order on the arrest was lifted Friday.
The friend turned down his proposal to carry out an attack.
The terrorist was identified as Abu Rakik, a 24-year-old former student at a technological college and a resident of the Bedouin town of Tel Sheva, near Be'er Sheva. He allegedly tried to contact a Gaza terrorist linked with the Al Qaeda network, headed by Osama Bin Laden, with the intentions of setting up a local cell.
Authorities said Rakik also had downloaded from the internet instructions on how to manufacture a bomb.
The indictment is the latest in a growing number of arrests and charges against Israeli Arabs linked to the international terrorist organization, which government officials several years ago dismissed as having any influence on Arab and Bedouin citizens living in the Jewish state.
Last month, four Israeli Arabs, including two from eastern Jerusalem, were arrested for trying to establish an Al Qaeda terrorist cell.
Al Qaeda's sights on Israel go back at least until 2002, when the organization was behind the double attack on Israelis in Kenya. Then-Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz said at the time, "Our hand will reach them," referring to the Al Qaeda terrorists.
A government spokesman stated after the attacks, "The road from 9/11 through Chechnya to Bali and now Mombasa is a clear one", and then-Foreign Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned that the attacks showed the dangers of setting up a new Arab state within Israel's current borders.
Binyamin Netanyahu warned that the attacks showed the dangers of setting up a new Arab state within Israel's current borders.
Intelligence experts warned the government after the withdrawal of the IDF from Gaza three summers ago that Al Qaeda might step up attacks in areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority (PA) and that several of its terrorists crossed into Gaza from Egypt.
Hizbullah deputy secretary-general Sheikh Naim Qassem told the Christian Science Monitor two years ago, after the Second Lebanon War, "Small [Al Qaeda] groups can infiltrate in and out very quickly. Weapons are available everywhere. It is not complex. These are not large groups of people. Just two or three who plan for a while and then launch several rockets."
Al Qaeda has used language in its propaganda similar to that of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, with such statements as, "The rockets fired at the grandchildren of monkeys and pigs from the south of Lebanon were only the start of a blessed in-depth strike against the Zionist enemy."