Israeli authorities have charged two men with planning an attack in the name of the Islamic State terror group, Israeli media report. The suspects, whose purported plan was foiled in 2015, were living in an Arab section of East Jerusalem when they were arrested. Local authorities said Monday that Mouasab Elian and Samir Abed Rabbo were plotting a car bomb attack against Israeli security forces, reported the Times of Israel.
Both men appeared Monday in Jerusalem District Court, where they were officially charged with conspiracy to aid the enemy in wartime, reported local news outlet Arutz Sheva.
The charges come one day after it was reported that the Islamic State group's faction in Egypt's Sinai peninsula has been plotting a "big operation" in Israel, according to the Jerusalem Post. Abu al-Ayna al-Ansari, identified as a top jihadist in the Gaza Strip, told a U.S. radio show that Israel as well as the U.S. is being targeted by the terror group that is also known as ISIS.
Deraa province: ISIS-Israel border pic.twitter.com/jw075K0Qoa
— Abdurahman Hark (@Abduhark) March 25, 2016
"The Islamic State educates its people that Israel and the United States are the leaders of the infidels and we believe that Israel should be disappeared," Ansari said, the Jerusalem Post reported. "It is only a question of time when there will be a big operation in Eilat and in the south of Israel." Eilat is Israel's southernmost city.
Israel has been fighting the ISIS threat not just on its own land but also abroad. For instance, the country's officials have encouraged its citizens to leave Turkey, where earlier this month a suicide bomber killed dozens in Istanbul.
"The deadly attack in central Istanbul, in which a group of Israeli tourists was hurt, once again demonstrates the high threat in Turkey posed by ISIS elements to tourist sites and shows a high capability to carry out more attacks," Israel's office of counterterrorism said.