With a list of potential recipients, the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) authorized the release of financial aid for needy Palestinians. The money is supposed to support humanitarian projects to improve the livelihoods of Gaza’s residents to purchase food and basic necessities. Instead, a lot of the money was diverted to buy weapons and train terrorists to kill Israelis.
This is Hamas’ financial modus operandi.
Israeli authorities arrested TIKA’s leader in Gaza last month for funneling money to Hamas’ military wing, Israel’s domestic security agency announced on Tuesday.
The Israelis say Hamas recruited TIKA’s Gaza branch head Muhammad Murtaja in 2008. The following year, he enlisted in Hamas’ military wing while maintaining his role as deputy director of Turkey’s IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation in Gaza. Several states, including Israel, designate IHH as a terrorist organization – a group that encourages and finances violence against the Jewish state. Murtaja allegedly helped Hamas finance construction of offensive tunnels, and obtain weapons and explosives. He was involved in terrorist training and even hid Hamas grenades and weapons in his home.
“The investigation showed that Murtaja deceived TİKA by misusing the organization’s resources and funds, which were intended for substantial humanitarian projects in the Gaza Strip, by diverting them to Hamas’s military wing. This fraud was carried out in collusion with the senior ranks of Hamas in Gaza, headed by Ismail Haniyeh,” Israeli Government Press Office statement said, adding that Murtaja sought “information that would improve the accuracy of Hamas rockets being launched at Israel.”
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