US/World News

Israel frees UN employee who helped Hamas in Gaza

(JTA) – A United Nations employee who assisted Hamas was released after six months in an Israeli prison. Waheed al-Bursh, a Palestinian engineer working for the United Nations Development Programme in Gaza, was sentenced last week to time served for assisting the terrorist group in transporting 300 tons of rubble to a Hamas-run facility, the Palestinian Ma’an news agency reported Jan. 12. Al-Bursh, who was detained by Israeli police in August, had been initially suspected of conspiring with Hamas, but was eventually convicted of unintentionally assisting the group. He was released on Thursday, Jan. 12 according to Ma’an.

The Shin Bet reported that the overall number of terrorist attacks recorded in Israel last month was 98, compared to 95 the previous month. Of the 98 attacks recorded in December, only 10 occurred in Jerusalem – a small increase from the nine attacks recorded in November. But for Jerusalem, November and December have been among the calmest months since the flare-up last year. The Shin Bet reports do not include dozens of incidents of rock throwing that occur every month, mainly in the West Bank.

According to Ma’an, more than 275 individuals have died during the wave of unrest that began in October 2015, including over 235 Palestinians, many of whom were killed while perpetrating attacks.

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