Security Council: Israelis, Jews face significant terror threat abroad

Israel’s National Security Council published a review on Thursday of the threat to Israelis from terror abroad, ahead of an anticipated increase in travel for the spring holidays.

Dozens of threats against Israeli targets have been thwarted in the past months, and the threat to Israelis abroad is especially high, the NSC said. There has been a continuous trend of increased threats to Israelis abroad in recent years that has gotten worse since the start of the Israel-Hamas war, they said, adding that the Iranian threat is prominent and has also increased.

There are a number of events abroad expected to draw Israeli crowds, including the Eurovision Song Contest and the Olympics, an Israeli official said, adding that Israelis attending these events should proceed with caution, especially about displaying Israeli signs abroad.

Iran is still the central, worldwide terror actor and has expanded its activity against Israeli citizens and Jews around the world in recent years, both directly and through proxies, it reported. Since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas war, these efforts have increased, according to the council. Iranian terror bodies continue trying to contact Israelis abroad and in Israel in disguise or under the guise of business in an attempt to harm or kidnap them, the NSC reported.

The ongoing war has also led to a significant increase in Hamas activity against Jews and Israelis abroad. In December 2023, a large terror infrastructure belonging to Hamas was exposed in a number of European countries, the council said.

The scene of a terrorist shooting in Tel Aviv on Saturday, August 5, 2023. (credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/MAARIV)

Council discourages Israelis to identify themselves abroad

Global Jihad and radical Islam still pose a threat and are continuing to plan and commit terror attacks around the world, mostly focused in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe, according to the NSC. Earlier this month, Islamic State killed over 130 people and injured dozens more in a terror attack in Moscow.

Antisemitism and the extreme Right still pose a threat to Israelis and Jews around the world, and there has been a significant increase in incitement against them in recent months, it reported. Jewish institutions and communities are a central target for these organizations, especially during holidays.

The NSC also published recommendations for Israelis to make themselves safer during travel abroad. They recommend that travelers avoid crowded areas such as malls and markets, as well as areas that are recognized as being Jewish or Western; staying alert in public places including restaurants, hotels and bars; avoiding showing signs of Israeli nationality in public; participating in mass events that do not have security; and avoiding publishing details of travel on social networks, including photos or details from trips in real time.

The NSC reminds travelers to avoid traveling to countries with high risk levels whenever possible. Travel advisories can be reviewed online.

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