Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-29-19

Terror Foiled
The Shin Bet announced yesterday that it had arrested a suspected terrorist late last month who planned to carry out a suicide car bombing in Ma’ale Adumim close to the Israeli elections. The 23-year-old man from the village of az-Za’ayyem, near Jerusalem, told investigators he communicated over the internet with Hamas operatives in Gaza and was conscripted in Gaza. He was told to scout potential locations for an attack and report back to Hamas, who then decided on the final target.

The Shin Bet said that Hamas is constantly attempting to recruit operatives in the West Bank.

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PA Rejects Cash
According to a news report released yesterday, Israel attempted to secretly transfer hundreds of millions of shekels to the Palestinian Authority as a partial payment in lieu of the tax payments that Israel withheld because the PA continues to pay salaries to terrorists and their families. But PA President Abbas rejected the cash transfer, saying the he would only accept the entire sum. Israel attempted the transfer in order to prevent the PA from economic collapse.

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Prisoner Release
Israel has decided to release 2 prisoners as a goodwill gesture for the recent return of the remains of Zachary Baumel. Israel did not provide any details about the identity of the prisoners, but Russian officials claim that they are Syrian.

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Lebanon Border
The speaker of Lebanon’s parliament has indicated that Lebanon is prepared to set a maritime border with Israel under the supervision of the United Nations. The move was reportedly encouraged as a result of talks with US Secretary of State Pompeo during his recent visit to Beirut. Israel and Lebanon do not currently have a mutually recognized maritime border, which has recently caused tensions to flare as a result of offshore oil and gas discoveries and exploration.

[Could this be part of the Trump peace deal?]

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Balloon Buster
The IDF has developed a new weapon to counter the threat from incendiary and explosive balloons and kites launched at Israel from Gaza. The weapon is a smart rifle sight called Pegion (dagger) developed by a company named Smart Shooter from Kibbutz Yagur in cooperation with the Administration for the Development of Weapons and Technological Infrastructure in the Ministry of Defense.

The sight improves fire from assault rifles carried by soldiers that make it possible to accurately strike targets moving at high speed. Such accuracy was unavailable until recently, because the sights previously mounted on weapons did not guarantee such accuracy against moving targets or in shooting at stationary targets following great physical effort.

The Pegion sight is an electro-optic system that makes it possible to follow a moving target in various scenarios, such as in the case of balloons and kites carrying explosives or incendiaries into Israeli territory. Based on the rapid mathematical calculations that it performs through computer software, it determines when the weapon on which it is mounted should shoot at the target, so that the first bullet fired at the target will strike it accurately.

The systems is built so that as soon as it is operated, it will not allow the soldier pulling the trigger to shoot at all at a target if it does not identify an accurate hit. Pegion is designed to hit targets at a range of hundreds of meters, with an emphasis on reducing potential damage to bystanders in urban warfare. Smart Shoot is currently developing a new and more advanced version that is believed to be lighter.

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