Israel arrests Arab citizen on suspicion he spied for Hezbollah

Israel Materials 6 August 2008 15:25 (UTC +04:00)

Israel has arrested an Arab-Israeli medical student on suspicion he was recruited to spy for the Lebanese Hezbollah guerrilla group, authorities announced Wednesday.

A government statement said Khaled Kashkoush, 29, was taken into custody at Ben Gurion Airport on July 16, as he returned to Israel from studying in Germany, reported dpa.

He had allegedy been recruited in Germany by a Hezbollah operative, who paid him 13,000 euros and began assigning him missions.

According to the statement released late Wednesday morning, Kashkoush was asked to provide the names of Israeli students who are studying abroad and who could be recruited to the Iranian-backed Hezbollah.

He was also asked to get a job at an Israeli hospital on completing his studies, in order to gather information on members of the security forces or soldiers hospitalized there.

His Hezbollah handler also showed him a map, taken off Google Earth, of his home town of Kalansua, north-east of Tel Aviv, and asked him to pin-point public buildings or the addresses of local residents.

Israeli security officials believe that Hezbollah, with whom Israel fought an inconclusive war in the summer of 2006, is increasings its efforts to recruit Arab-Israelis to spy for it.