Convicted to life sentences for murder, six Palestinian terrorists escaped through a secret tunnel from the high security Gilboa Prison in northern Israel. Early Monday, a warder discovered their empty cells. Backed-up police and Shin Bet forces set up roadblocks and began combing nearby villages for the escaped convicts. Local people were advised to exercise maximum vigilance while going about their business as usual, although abductions were not ruled out.
One of the fugitives is the notorious Zakaria Zubeidi, ringleader of the Jenin branch of the Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, and responsible for multiple deadly attacks. The other five are said to belong to the extremely violent Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s Jenin branch. The escapees may possibly have gone to ground in that West Bank city or try to cross into Jordan.