Israel’s Shin Bet security agency, in conjunction with the Israel Prison Service, has foiled a plot hatched by Palestinian prisoners serving life sentences to kidnap Israeli soldiers and use them as bargaining chips in an exchange deal.
Indictments against the suspects were filed at the Salem Military Court, the Shin Bet said Sunday, Israel Hayom reported. According to investigators, the kidnappings were planned for April and would have targeted Israeli soldiers at the Huwara, Ariel, and Yitzhar junctions in Samaria.
The suspects allegedly began planning the kidnappings in 2012, recruiting soon-to-be-released prisoners to carry out the operation.
Using smuggled cellphones, the imprisoned plotters sent instructions to recruits on the outside, telling them to prepare a hiding place, purchase weapons, obtain anesthetic materials, and steal a vehicle. They were also told to visit Saudi Arabia to meet with an operative who would provide them with funding.