Senior Hamas operative who infiltrated int’l charity ‘World Vision’ arrested
Mohammad Halabi, a senior Hamas operative who infiltrated the international aid organization World Vision and served as manager of its Gaza branch, was arrested in June and currently faces charges over a series of security-related offenses, according to Halabi's indictment filed on Thursday.
According to the indictment, Halabi used his positon in World Vision to funnel donor funds directly to senior Hamas figures, choose suppliers based on the needs of Hamas, and prepare tenders in coordination with the terrorist organization. Those activities involved tens of millions of dollars a year. His position also enabled him to travel freely to and from Israel.
Most of the aid sent by Halabi was said to have been used to strengthen Hamas militarily, such as the building of outposts and tunnels, and to help Hamas members and their families. The investigation is still at an early stage but it has already found that many charity, aid and religious organizations are directly tied to the terrorist organization.
Halabi was arrested on June 15 and is said to have confessed under questioning. He is charged with a range of offenses including provision of information to the enemy, membership in a terrorist organization, funding of terror, and contact with a foreign agent.
The district court in Beersheba ordered that Halabi remain under arrest until the completion of the legal procedures against him.
World Vision, which receives funds from the UN and Western countries, was set up to supply medicine, food and shelter to citizens and refugees in war-torn countries.