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article imagePolice thwart large-scale terror attack in Tel Aviv

By Carolyn E. Price     Feb 20, 2007 in Crime
Security forces have arrested a Palestinian West Bank resident and three others in connection with terror plot.
Security forces have foiled what they are calling a "large-scale" terrorist attack planned for Tel Aviv. Police received a tip from the Shin Bet security service and arrested a Palestinian resident of the West Bank and three other people at a Bat Yam house.
A senior member of the Islamic Jihad said the group had planned the attack and had sent one of their militants execute it. Two of the other Palestinians arrested at the Bat Yam house were identified as collaborators and all three were illegally residing in Israel.
After his arrest, the suspect confessed to police that he planned to carry out an attack and led them to a trash bin in Rishon Letzion where he had hidden a bag of explosives. The suspect had put the explosives there earlier that morning.
Sources close to the investigation are saying that the attack was to have taken place Tuesday evening at the central bus station in Tel Aviv. The sources say they don't know why the suspect hid the explosives in a Rishion Letzion trash bin and returned to Bat Yam without them.
It is not clear whether the Palestinians arrested along with the suspect had been aware of his plan to carry out an attack.
Security forces had put up roadblocks across Tel Aviv on Tuesday afternoon, particularly in the southern part of the city because they suspected that a suicide bomber was in the area. Police were deployed in large numbers to search vehicles and residential yards. The alert level was also extended into Rishon Letzion.
The security level in the Tel Aviv-Jaffa area had been raised due to a terror alert. Immediately following the suspect's arrest, police lowered the security level.
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