Al-Nujaba Militia Leader In Past Meeting With Palestinian Faction Leaders: We Can Infiltrate Israel; We Are Interested In Military-Security Cooperation

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May 13, 2021

The following report is now a complimentary offering from MEMRI's Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM). For JTTM subscription information, click here. 

Amid the escalation between the Palestinians and Israel in the recent weeks, the pro-Iranian Shi'ite militias in Iraq have issued statements expressing support for the Palestinian factions and Palestinian people and willingness to help them in their war against Israel. Some of the militias also threatened to target the U.S. forces in Iraq in retaliation for America's support for Israel.[1]

As part of these expressions of support, one of these militias, Al-Nujaba, posted for the first time a report about a meeting held by its secretary-general, Akram Al-Ka'bi, with the head of Hamas' political bureau Isma'il Haniya and the secretary-general of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), Ziad Al-Nakhalah. [2] According to the report, which appeared in Arabic and Farsi on the militia's website, in the meeting Al-Ka'bi stressed his organization's willingness to cooperate with the Palestinian resistance factions on the political and military levels, and declared that members of the Iraqi resistance are able to infiltrate Israeli territory. The report did not specify when and where the meeting took place, but it was very likely held in Tehran in January 2020, around the time of the funeral of IRGC Qods Force commander Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in a U.S. airstrike in the beginning of that month.[3]


Al-Ka'bi (center) with Haniya (right) and Al-Nakhalah (left) (Source: Alnujaba.ir, May 12, 2021)

In the meeting Al-Ka'bi said: "The Iraqi people have always stood by the oppressed people of Palestine and have supported their efforts toward liberation from the savage and occupying Zionist regime. I personally wish to fight the enemies in the holy land of Palestine...

"Armed resistance is the only way to liberate the holy city of Jerusalem and, consequently, the entire land of Palestine, and we believe that the [Palestinian] resistance is close to that moment of liberation… The war with Israel will no longer be limited to one country in the eastern Mediterranean [Palestine]. Instead, the Zionists will be surprised to [find themselves] facing a front consisting of warriors who believe in divinely-decreed borders and are of various nationalities.”

Al-Ka'bi stressed: “We are ready for any military-security cooperation with our Palestinian brothers. We are monitoring all the informal activity of the Zionists in Iraq… and I promise that the Islamic resistance [in Iraq] has the ability to reach the depths of the occupied territories.”

 

Al-Ka'bi's claim that Al-Nujaba can "reach the depths of the occupied territories" is not an empty boast, since the militia apparently has a presence in Gaza. Since May 2020, an Al-Nujaba information bureau has been active there, and on May 4, 2020 this bureau reported that its activists had distributed food packages to families of Palestinian operatives killed or imprisoned by Israel. On June 6, 2020 the bureau reported that its activists had launched balloons into Israel.[4] In January 2021 the militia also launched a website in Hebrew documenting its activity.[5]

Although, according to the reports so far, the militia's activity in Gaza has been minimal, it cannot be ruled out that its activists are involved in the current Gaza hostilities.

 

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