An Israeli citizen was convicted on Wednesday for contacting and attempting to join ISIS. Valentin Vladimir Mazalevsky, the man in question, is a resident of Shibli in northern Israel who converted to Islam in 2000.


Mazalevsky Photo Credit: Shin-Bet spokesperson

The Nazareth District Court convicted Valentin Vladimir Mazalevsky, 40, of contacting a terrorist organization on Wednesday. Mazalevsky, a father of five, was arrested in February after he purchased a flight ticket to Turkey and expressed intentions of joining ISIS on social media.

Mazalevsky made Aliyah from Belarus in 1996 and converted to Islam in 2000 during his IDF military service after he met his wife, a resident of the Israeli-Arab town of Shibli in northern Israel. The Shin-Bet investigation concluded that Mazalevsky supported the idea of an Islamic state and intended to cross the border into Syria once he arrived in Turkey. “The Shin-Bet views Israelis leaving for Syria and Iraq as a very dangerous phenomenon,” said the agency in a statement.