Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman warned Friday that a senior official in the Palestinian Hamas terror group, Saleh al-Arouri, recently expelled from Qatar, has resettled in Lebanon, where he has been planning, along with two other activists, terror attacks against Israel.
During a meeting with visiting American UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Lieberman alleged that Arouri has also been attempting “to boost the relationship between Hamas and Hezbollah,” the Shiite Lebanese militia, “under an Iranian umbrella, and with the assistance of the Revolutionary Guards and [its leader] Qassem Soleimani,” according to a Hebrew-language statement from the Defense Ministry.
Arouri, he said, is a “dangerous terrorist” responsible for deadly terror attacks against Israel, and he cannot be allowed to continue with his activities. Lebanon is a “sovereign country” that maintains high-level bilateral ties with the United States, Lieberman continued, urging Washington to pressure Lebanon into expelling the three Hamas activists.
Israeli intelligence officials believe Arouri was behind the abduction and killing of three Jewish teenagers in the West Bank in the summer of 2014. That attack was among the main catalysts of the war in Gaza about a month later.
Arouri served several stints in Israeli jails, and was released in March 2010, within the framework of talks to free Gilad Shalit, the IDF corporal kidnapped by Hamas in 2006. Read more at Times of Israel.