memri
May 25, 2006 Special Dispatch No. 1173

Interrogated Hamas Operatives Say They Smuggled Weapons From Iraq Into Jordan at the Order of Hamas Leaders in Syria

May 25, 2006
Palestine | Special Dispatch No. 1173

A May 11, 2006 report on Jordanian TV showed footage of weapons that were caught by Jordanian intelligence after being smuggled into Jordan at the orders of Hamas leaders in Syria. The report also included Hamas operatives from Jordan explaining how they were recruited into Hamas and discussing their training and missions.

The following are excerpts from the report.

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Reporter: "These are weapons that Hamas members smuggled into Jordan. They stored them in several places in Jordan. Automatic weapons, submachine guns, ammunition, hand-grenades, mines, different types of explosives, Grad missiles, LAW missiles that can be used against buildings and cars, and Katyusha missiles, some of which are Iranian-made.

"These weapons were smuggled as part of a plot against vital installations and officials in Jordan, at the orders of Hamas leaders in Syria.

"The general intelligence agency exposed the plot, and caught some of the weapons on April 18, 2006. It also arrested Hamas members involved in the planning."

Hamas member Daraghmeh: "My name is Ayman Naji Saleh Hamdallah Daraghmeh, and I'm 34. I live in Al-Hashimiya in Al-Zarqaa.

"I got involved with Hamas through a friend of mine, Tawfiq Al-'Abushi. He told me that he worked for Hamas, and suggested that I work for it too. I agreed. He told me I had to go to Syria, so he could get me connected with them. I went with him to Syria, and we stayed at a hotel. In Syria, we met a Hamas official called Abu Al-'Abd."

[...]

"I began a course in security, which included interrogation, not breaking down under interrogation, safety in communication and in travel, personal security, and many such things. I also underwent a military course. Then I went back to Jordan."

[...]

"[Hamas leader] Abu Anas asked me to work with him in Jordan, and gave me a map of an area where the weapons were stored in Jordan. This was in Deir Al-Kahf."

[...]

Hamas member Abu Dhiab: "My name is Ahmad Nimr Mustafa Abu Dhiab. I live in a rural area, in Al-Mufarad. I worked as an imam in my village.

"My relations with Hamas began in April 2004. I was recruited by 'Mahmoud,' whose real name is Ayman Naji, through a friend of mine, Ahmad Abu Rabi'a. 'Mahmoud' instructed me to purchase weapons and ammunition for Hamas. Then he asked me if I had a driver's license. I told him I did, and he said to me: 'I will give you a bus, and you will drive this bus from Jordan to the Al-Qaim region [in Iraq], and bring weapons and explosives back to Jordan.'

"Later, he sent me to 'Aqaba to gather information about foreign tourists there. I remember that he asked me if I had a passport, and I said yes. He told me that he wanted the passport, a copy of my ID card, and two passport photos. He told me that I would go to Syria for a 20-day course in weapons and other military training, and then return to Jordan."

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Another Hamas member: "I asked Ahmad to gather information about the farm of Sami George Khouri as a possible target, because we thought he was a Jew."

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