The Israeli Internal Security Service, Shabak, lifted a gag order on the arrest of two Palestinians from the Hamas movement last month. The two members of Hamas are charged of planning to form a cell that will be in charge of abducting Israeli soldiers.

The two, identified as Izzat Sha’ban, 33, and Jom’a Azzam, 38, were arrested by the Israeli security forces in the Western Negev area on April 14, after infiltrating into Israeli through Sinai.

According to Israeli security sources, the two members met with Hamas leaders, including Ahmad Ghandour, leader of Hamas military wing in the Gaza Strip.  Ghandour apparently instructed them to form the cell, the sources added.

Israeli soldiers found a gun, two hand grenades, and a sum of 2300 US Dollars with the two arrestees.

The Israeli security claimed that the two members planned to abduct the soldiers in order to swap them with Palestinian detainees imprisoned in Israeli detention facilities and camps.

The Shabak claims that Hamas’ military wing is organizing cells that are capable of carrying “fast operations” in case of any escalation in the area.

Over the last eight months, the Israeli security arrested dozens of members of Hamas and the Popular Resistance Committees after attempting to infiltrate into Israel through the Sinai desert.  

On Thursday, Israeli soldiers arrested one Arab resident of Al Taybeh, in Israel, and two Palestinian residents of the West Bank. The two are suspected of aiding the two Hamas members who are accused of plotting to abduct Israeli soldiers.

One Palestinian resident was arrested two weeks ago after infiltrating through Sinai to the West Bank, the resident is suspected of having ties with the Hamas cell.