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Hamas Activist Wanted by Israel Seized by Palestinian Authorities

Israel lifted its closure on the Gaza Strip after Palestinian police arrested a man suspected of planning a suicide bomb attack in Tel Aviv.

Israel imposed the closure on Aug. 10 after receiving about the planned suicide bombing. The closure prevented thousands of Palestinian laborers from entering Israel.

Israel shared its intelligence about the planned attack with the Palestinian police, who spent more than a week attempting to find Wael Nasser, a member of the Islamic fundamentalist Hamas movement.

Palestinian police captured Nasser and two other Hamas members last Friday after a shootout in Gaza City’s Sheik Radwan neighborhood, a Hamas stronghold.

Hamas has claimed responsibility for terror attacks that have killed 86 Israelis and wounded 272 others since the signing of the self-rule accord in Washington in September 1993. Several police officers and local residents were wounded in the exchange of gunfire during the four-hour battle. Hundreds of angry Hamas followers reportedly threw stones at the police.

The three surrendered after Hamas officials offered to mediate. Imad Faluji, a Hamas leader in Gaza, said the three agreed to give themselves up after being assured that they would not be turned over to Israel and that they would be released soon.

The Israeli daily Ma’ariv quoted security sources as being concerned that Nasser may attempt to carry out a terror attack if he were allowed to go free.

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