Basham al-Saadi in custody
Basham al-Saadi in custody Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) has completed its investigation into the head of the Jenin branch of Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader, Bassam al-Saadi, on charges of committing offenses related to holding membership in and serving an illegal organization and inciting support for terrorism.

The material from the investigation has been turned over to the military prosecution service, which stated that it intends to indict al-Saadi.

The military court acceded to the prosecution's request and extended the leader's detention by another five days.

Al-Saadi has been in detention since the beginning of August, ever since information was received suggesting that he was planning several terrorist operations. He was arrested by border patrol and IDF forces. His arrest caused an uptick in tensions between Israel and the terrorist organization, which ultimately led the IDF to launch operation "Breaking Dawn", a three-day offensive in the Gaza Strip.

Al-Saadi is 62 years old and launched his career in terrorism back in 1984. He was one of the most influential figures in the Islamic Jihad movement, and has been arrested seven times for planning terrorist operations, his arrests dating back to the days of the Second Intifada. He has spent long years behind bars, and two of his sons were killed in altercations with IDF forces in 2002.

According to Shabak sources, al-Saadi was in the process of rehabilitating the organization and enhancing its capabilities in Samaria and especially in Jenin. His presence was seen as pushing Islamic Jihad toward more extremist positions.