Left: The rifle and magazines used in the shooting attack in which Baruch Mizrahi was killed by a Palestinian terrorist released in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal (Israel Security Agency, June 23, 2014). Right: Baruch Mizrahi, an Israeli police officer, killed in a shooting attack on the night of the Passover Seder (Facebook page of the Israel Police Force, April 15, 2014)
1. It was recently made known that on May 7, 2014, the Israeli security forces detained a Hamas terrorist operative from the Hebron region who was released in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal (October 2011). The Palestinian is suspected of having carried out, with the help of his son, the shooting attack that killed Israeli police officer Baruch Mizrahi on April 14, 2014. Until his release he had been imprisoned in Israel for the murder of a Palestinian he suspected of collaborating with Israel.
2. The detention of another terrorist operative released in the Shalit deal is an indication of the widespread return, especially of Hamas operatives, to terrorist activities in Judea and Samaria. The terrorists released in the Shalit deal are actively involved in terrorist and violence in Judea and Samaria, and direct terrorist activities from the Gaza Strip and countries including Qatar and Turkey. The analysis of cases where operatives released in the Shalit deal were involved in terrorist activities (See Appendix A) revealed that Saudi Arabia and Jordan were exploited as venues where Palestinians from Judea and Samaria met with handlers from abroad. In addition, terrorist operatives relocated in the Shalit deal are active in propaganda-indoctrination activities and in the so-called "popular resistance" in Judea and Samaria.
3. On October 18, 2011, Gilad Shalit was released from captivity in the Gaza Strip in return for 1,027 Palestinian security prisoners, among them terrorist operatives who had been sentenced to long prison terms for their involvement in murdering Israelis. Approximately 620 prisoners were permitted to return to Judea and Samaria and east Jerusalem. Since the Shalit deal, 76 have been detained again, having returned to terrorist activities in violation of the terms of their release (i.e., about 12% of the prisoners released to Judea and Samaria and east Jerusalem have been apprehended for involvement in terrorist activities, and the number is expected to rise with the detentions resulting from the abduction of the three Israeli youths).
4. In addition, in June 2014, during Operation Brothers' Keeper, conducted to find the youths abducted from the Gush Etzion region, 56 additional Shalit deal prisoners were detained, most of them affiliated with Hamas. Each of them will be individually examined by a committee to determine whether or not he violated the terms of the release (For the names of 51 new detainees, as reported by the Palestinian media, see Appendix B).
5. The phenomenon of the mass return to terrorist activities of released Palestinian operatives is well known. One prominent example was the 1985 so-called Jibril Agreement, in which 1,150 terrorist operatives were released, hundreds of whom had been involved in terrorist activities in Judea and Samaria (experts believe their release may have been an important factor in the outbreak of the first Palestinian intifada in 1987). However, there is still no historical perspective for the Shalit deal which would make it possible to determine the overall security consequences to the State of Israel of the release of the terrorists.
6. For examples of the involvement of terrorists released in the Shalit deal in terrorism in Judea and Samaria, and their involvement in orchestrating terrorism in Judea and Samaria from the Gaza Strip and abroad, see Appendix A.
The Murder of Baruch Mizrachi and the Apprehension of the Murderers
7. On April 14, 2014, a few hours before the Passover Seder, there was a shooting attack on the road to Hebron near the Tarqumia crossing. Dozens of shots were fired at seven Israeli vehicles. The shots hit a car and members of an Israeli family en route to celebrate the Seder in Kiryat Arba were wounded. The father, Baruch Mizrahi, 48, a police officer, was killed. His wife was critically wounded; two of their five children sustained minor injuries.
8. On June 23, 2014, it was announced that on May 7, 2014, the Israeli security forces detained two suspects, father and son, from the village of Edna (west of Hebron), for involvement in the Passover eve shooting attack in which Police Superintendent Baruch Mizrahi was killed (Israel Security Agency website, June 23, 2014):
1) Ziad Hassan Awad– 42, Hamas operative, suspected of committing the murder. He was formerly imprisoned in Israel for killing Palestinians suspected of collaborating with Israel. He was released in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal in October 2011.
2) Izz al-Din Ziad Hassan Awad– 18, son of Ziad Hassan Awad, suspected of participating in planning the attack and helping his father escape after it had been carried out.
Left: Video of the reception held for Ziad Hassan Awad (circle) upon his release. In the background are green flags affiliated with Hamas (YouTube, October 20, 2014). Right: Ziad Hassan Awad and his son, Izz al-Din Ziad Hassan Awad (Maannews.net, June 23, 2014).
9. During interrogation Izz al-Din Ziad Hassan Awad admitted that he know about his father's intentions and gave up the Kalashnikov assault rifle used to carry out the attack. The interrogation also revealed that before the attack Ziad Awad acquired a motorbike and a rifle, and also went to the site of the attack to gather information and carry out surveillance. Despite the fact that both father and son were Hamas operatives, the attack was apparently not externally directed or supported, and the motive was apparently religious (Israel Security Agency website, June 23, 2014).