Israel arrests French consulate employee on arms smuggling claims

Israel has arrested an employee of France’s consulate in Jerusalem on suspicion of smuggling weapons to Palestinians, officials have said.

In a Hebrew-language statement, the Shin Bet security service said a French citizen had used a consulate vehicle to elude Israeli security checks and move 70 pistols and two assault rifles through the Erez crossing to the occupied West Bank on at least five occasions.

The French national, a man in his twenties, was due to appear in court in southern Israel on Monday, officials said.