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Palestinian journalist accused of attempting to recruit Israelis to Hezbollah: reports

Journalist Bayrot Hamoud, who holds Israeli citizenship, works for the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar [Getty]

Date of publication: 1 July, 2020

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Israel's security agency has accused a Lebanon-based Palestinian journalist of attempting to recruit Palestinian Israelis to join Islamist group Hezbollah.
Israel has accused a Palestinian journalist of attempting to recruit Israeli citizens to join the Lebanese Islamist movement Hezbollah, Israeli media reported on Tuesday.

Shin Bet, Israel's security agency, alleged that Palestinian journalist Bayrot Hamoud, who holds Israeli citizenship, had attempted to recruit Israeli-Palestinians to join the militant Shia group, according to the reports.

After an investigation into two Palestinian citizens of Israel from the journalist's hometown of Majd Al-Krum, Shin Bet officials accused Hamoud of attempting to recruit the women during a meeting in Turkey, last December.

Hamoud relocated to Beirut, Lebanon in 2013, where she lives with her husband and child.

According to the reports, Shin Bet had questioned Hamoud in 2013 on suspicion of contacting Hezbollah activists she met during a 2008 conference in Morocco and another in Tunisia four years later.

The agency accused Hamoud of exploiting her Israeli citizenship to "aid terrorist and espionage activities".

Hamoud works for Al-Akhbar, a Lebanese newspaper known for its ties to Hezbollah.

Shin Bet also accused Hamoud's husband, Bilal Bizri, of playing a role in the alleged recruitment.

In statements on her Facebook account, Hamoud said she was "punished" for spending the New Year in Turkey, adding that Israeli forces investigated her for two-and-a-half months in 2013 and "found nothing".

Hamoud said Shin Bet had threatened to kill her and her five-year-old son with a car bomb or missile.

She said the agency also arrested and interrogated her family and friends.

On Wednesday, Al-Akhbar published a story condemning Shin Beit, saying Hamoud was targeted due to her Palestinian background and reporting on Israel.


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