Egyptian officials confirmed Sunday that they had arrested a top Hamas intelligence chief over the weekend believed to hold important information regarding abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, according to Channel 10.
Relatives of Gaza-based Mohammed Dababish say he was arrested at Cairo airport while returning from a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia.
Egyptian officials said that Dababish was initially detained because his name was on a wanted list for using falsified travel documents.
They later said he was suspected of holding information on the soldier, who was kidnapped by Hamas militants in a 2006 cross-border raid, and therefore consider the arrest to be a crucial one.
The officials and relatives spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject.
Dababish is a top official in Hamas' internal security unit, which oversees intelligence matters in Gaza. Hamas officials declined comment.
Egypt has arrested a string of Hamas figures since an Egyptian soldier was killed in a border shooting early this year.
According to Palestinian news agency Ma'an, Dababish, also known as Abu Radwan, was arrested on suspicion of attempting to smuggle electronic equipment worth two million dollars to Gaza via underground tunnels.
In reposnse, Hamas warned that Dababish's imprisonment could lead to heightened tensions with Egypt, the reports said.
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