IDF spokesman, December 29, 2007
Sacks of potassium nitrate
Potassium nitrate camouflaged as sugar sent as European Union aid
to the Palestinian Authority (IDF spokesman, December 29, 2007).
1. In a combined IDF-Israeli Security Agency operation carried out a few weeks ago at a West Bank crossing , a truck was seized carrying six and a half tons of potassium nitrate . The chemical was camouflaged as a shipment of sugar sacks bearing the inscription " EEC2 sugar exported from E.U. ” and intended for terrorist operatives in the Gaza Strip .
Sacks of potassium nitrate (IDF spokesman, December 29, 2007).
2. Potassium nitrate and sugar are two of the basic components for manufacturing explosives for charges and rockets. The manufacturing process is simple and the terrorist organizations prepare them widely in homemade laboratories. As an explosive component, it is forbidden by Israel to import potassium nitrate into Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip , with the result that the terrorist organizations use various methods to smuggle it in. 1
3. The incident shows how the terrorist organizations cynically exploit the humanitarian aid sent to the civilian populace by international organizations to smuggle materials used in the production of weapons into the Gaza Strip. A senior EU official responded by saying that the Union was examining the Israeli claim and "if it is found to be accurate, this an illegal act that should be condemned” (Reuters, Jerusalem , December 29).
1 For example, the Egyptian security forces recently detained Mahdi Salim abu Frij, who lives near the border after they found more than half a ton of explosives and 1.2 tons of potassium nitrate in his house. He admitted that the materials had been smuggled into the Gaza Strip via tunnels (Jerusalem Post, December 26, 2007).