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Israel closes two Islamic charities

Israel police and the security agency Shin Bet yesterday closed two Muslim charities in Israel under claims of funding Israeli Islamist movements and Hamas, AFP and the Anadolu Agency reported.

The Muslim Women for Al-Aqsa, in East Jerusalem, and Al-Fajr Foundation for Culture and Literature in the Arab city of Nazareth in northern Israel, were all shut down.

According to a statement issued by the Israeli police, the charities were suspected of financing “organisations which identify with Hamas” and encouraging activists to confront visitors to Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Ya’alon outlawed the charities last month claiming they posed a threat on Israeli national security. Shin Bet implemented Ya’alon’s order.

“The charities… are suspected of paying activists who go every day to the Temple Mount [Al-Aqsa Mosque],” a police statement said.

The charities said the Israeli police raided their offices and “confiscated computers, documents and bank records from two of the offices and arrested employees for questioning”.

In a statement they denied all accusations of money-laundering and financing “terror” activities or “violence” at Al-Aqsa Mosque and denied any links to “terrorist organisations”.

Adding that the Muslim Women for Al-Aqsa “organises study for women inside the mosque and supervises their activities.”

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