WHEN word came that Zaki Agbaria’s 28-year-old son had been killed in Syria, neighbours in this Arab encampment in northern Israel intoxicated any building with posters temperament his son’s photo. The lamentation incited out to be for a wrong chairman – a slain male had been misidentified – though a sufferer print in Agbaria’s vital room remains.
“I have to be picturesque here,” pronounced Agbaria, 51, about his son, Muayad. “He’s not vacationing in a Hawaiian Islands, sitting on a beach. We design he competence pass divided any day.”
Inside Syria’s dark war
Israel’s Shin Bet confidence group estimates that given a polite quarrel erupted in Syria some-more than dual years ago, about 20 Arab adults of Israel have sneaked into Syria to quarrel a regime of Bashar Assad. While that’s only a handful of people, a participation of Arab Israelis among a insurgent fighters is a special concern, both for Israeli confidence authorities and for a families of a radical fighters.
Arab adults make adult a fifth of a Israeli population. Like all Israelis, they’re banned from travelling to Syria, that is strictly during quarrel with Israel, creation them a unlikeliest of a unfamiliar Muslim ideologues who’ve poured into Syria to assistance disintegrate Assad – and those, perhaps, who have a many to remove if they lapse to their home nation alive.
The relatives of a radical fighters, and their communities, are unapproachable of a immature group for assisting associate Muslims in need, though they worry that their children competence never make it behind home – and if they do, that they’ll face critical charges for creation hit with an rivalry country.
For Shin Bet, a participation in Syria of a handful of Arab Israelis “is installed with high intensity risk for a state of Israel,” a group pronounced in a statement.
According to a Shin Bet, Arab Israelis who go to Syria are mostly fundamentalist Muslims who strengthen their ideologies once in Syria, bear troops training there and could supply comprehension about Israeli targets or be recruited to conflict Israelis during home or abroad.
Attorney Hilal Jaber, who represented another Arab Israeli who trafficked to Syria, pronounced Israeli authorities were foul portrayal all those who trafficked to Syria as fundamentalists.
Jaber’s client, Hikmat Masarwa, was arrested in Mar after returning from Syria and condemned to dual and a half years in jail. Masarwa claimed he went there not to quarrel though to demeanour for his brother, who’d trafficked there months before and had mislaid hold with his family.
Masarwa claimed that he was prisoner by rebels in a Free Syria Army and that he offering to assistance them in hopes of anticipating his brother. He lerned with a rebels for a week, afterwards returned to Israel around Turkey and was arrested as shortly as he landed, Jaber said. Then all of Masarwa’s family was summoned for questioning.
“There is a fear that this will mistreat a confidence of Israel,” Jaber said. “Every tiny thing that happens, they do a full search, even infrequently by transgressing polite rights.”
The Muslim encampment in Israel is ripped about a fighters, saying them as insane though also as assisting associate Muslims in need.
Sheik Kemal Khatib, a emissary conduct of Israel’s Islamic Movement, that promotes Islam among a country’s Arabs, pronounced he’d preached opposite immature group such as Muayad unctuous into Syria.
“We are Arabs, Muslims, and we should assistance any other,” Khatib said. “But Syria doesn’t need any some-more youths. They have enough. Our purpose is in Palestine, by staying here and guarding a holy sites.”
The relatives of immature group who go to quarrel in Syria bear a many anguish: Their children mostly leave though warning, so their relatives can't stop them.
Agbaria pronounced he looked on as his son avidly watched pledge videos online of Syrian supervision brutality, barbarous during how tiny Western countries were doing to stop a murdering of civilians. Muayad had recently married, that competence have done him consider twice about going to fight, though he’d also spin some-more religious, Agbaria said.
When Muayad went blank in late Aug and left his phone during home, Agbaria had a camber about where he competence have gone. He went to transport offices in a circuitously city and detected that Muayad and dual tighten friends had bought craft tickets to Turkey, that shares a limit with Syria.
“I didn’t spin to a police, since we didn’t consider they could assistance us, generally during this time of quarrel in Syria,” Agbaria said.
Other families whose children went blank incited not to a military though to Agbaria for advice. One youth’s father and uncle were formulation to revisit a Syrian-Turkish limit to hunt for their desired one, and asked Agbaria to join them. He refused.
“Where am we ostensible to look? It’s not a tiny village.” Agbaria said.
After Muayad disappeared, a subsequent thing Agbaria listened about him was a proclamation that he’d died. A month later, Muayad called during a Eid al-Adha holiday, unknowingly that his family was lamentation his death.
The phone call, however, did not move relief.
“He called to tell me he was alive, in good condition and good health,” Agbaria said. “He didn’t tell me where he was job me from. . we had a lot of questions. we asked how prolonged until we come back; will it be one month, dual months? He said, ‘Not one month and not two, maybe a year or two.'”
The fear of their children being arrested once they lapse has done Arab-Israeli relatives tight-lipped about those who disappear. One male refused to elaborate about where his nephew competence be.
“From a indicate of view, he went to Turkey,” a uncle said. “He could be swimming in a Atlantic Ocean, a Black Sea, a Aegean Sea – we don’t know.”
In November, Zaki Agbaria spoke to his son for dual hours one day on Skype. Agbaria pronounced he hoped to accommodate Muayad in a third country, maybe Turkey or Jordan.
“He pronounced he is doing well, and he didn’t tell us where he is. He pronounced he’s removing a income and he’s removing remarried,” Agbaria said. “He’s not entrance back.”