Shin Bet Thwarts Iranian Operation to Recruit Israeli Assets

An Israeli soldier looks through his binoculars as he monitors the southern Lebanese village of Kfar Kila from the Israeli town of Metula, as seen from the Lebanese side of the border, on May 11, 2012. The Israeli military is building a wall that will run several kilometres (miles) along …
MAHMOUD ZAYYAT/AFP/Getty

(UPI) — Israeli intelligence said Wednesday agents have foiled Iranian attempts to recruit operatives to collect information on military bases, security installations, police stations, hospitals and other potential targets.

Israeli police, the Israeli Defense Force and the Shin Bet intelligence agency said Tehran tried to recruit through social media for potential agents to work “for the benefit of Iranian intelligence.”

Authorities said agents found Israeli citizens were contacted Iranian handlers in Syria, where they intended to carry out terrorist attacks against civilian and military targets.

Shin Bet said “the vast majority of Israeli citizens refused to cooperate” because they suspected it was a “hostile element.”

Israeli officials said the Syrian effort is led by a front called Abu-Jihad that has recruited in Judea, Samaria, Gaza and other parts of Israel. They operated using phony Facebook profiles and messaging apps, they added.

Shin Bet said Hamas and Hazbollah are behind the recruitment campaigns.

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