Israeli security agencies believes that at least 10 Israeli Arabs had joined the ranks of the self-styled Islamic State militant group, active in Syria and Iraq, the Israeli radio reported Friday.
Sources with Israel's internal security agency (Shin Bet) were quoted by the broadcaster as saying that decision-makers in Israel had been notified about the "fact" during closed-doors meetings recently.
According to the unnamed sources, dozens of Israeli Arabs had joined the armed opposition fighting against the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad since 2011.
"Some of them joined [al-Qaeda-linked] Al-Nusra Front, while others had joined the Islamic State," the sources said, without giving number of those who joined the former.
The Islamic State, formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, has recently managed to capture large swathes of Iraqi and Syrian territory.
On Wednesday, Israel officially banned the Islamic State and called it an illegal organization.
The decision came a few days after the group purportedly beheaded American journalist Steven Sotloff who also held Israeli citizenship.
Early last month, the U.S. began launching "limited" airstrikes in areas of Iraq now controlled by the group.
By Alaa Rimawi