A young Palestinian from Qalqilya has been accused of receiving instructions from Hezbollah to carry out attacks in Israel. Yusef Yasser Swilem was instructed to plan reconnaissance operations of IDF bases and checkpoints and to set up a terror cell to kidnap Israelis.

Yusef Yasser Swilem

Yusef Yasser Swilem Photo credit: Shin Bet / Channel 2 News

It was cleared for publication today (Thursday) that the military court in the northern West Bank indicted Yusef Yasser Swilem, a 23-year-old resident of Qalqiliya, citing security offenses. The Shin Bet, in cooperation with the Israel Police and the IDF, arrested Swilem after it became clear that he had received instructions from Hezbollah to assist in carrying out terror attacks including kidnapping.

The Shin Bet’s interrogation discovered that Swilem, who works as a locksmith, was recruited to Hezbollah via a Facebook profile that Hezbollah would use to discover and recruit potential terrorists. During his recruitment process, Swilem was instructed to open an operational email address through which coded instructions would be sent to him.

Swilem was in contact with his Hezbollah handler, nicknamed “Abu Hassin,” who would direct Swilem to carry out various operations- among them conducting reconnaissance of an IDF base, checkpoints and numerous sites in the Old City of Jerusalem. Swilem also received instructions to set up a terror cell to kidnap Israelis and transfer them over the border into Lebanon.