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Mossad hit squad blamed for Hamas killing,hunt begins

Interpol put 11 people suspected in the slaying of a Hamas commander in Dubai on its most-wanted list on Thursday to keep...

Written by Agencies | Paris | Published: February 19, 2010 2:45:43 am

Interpol put 11 people suspected in the slaying of a Hamas commander in Dubai on its most-wanted list on Thursday to keep them from travelling on what are believed to be fake passports.

The international police agency says it has issued red notices,its highest-level alert,to its member countries worldwide for “11 internationally wanted individuals who have been charged by UAE-Dubai authorities with coordinating and committing the murder”.

On Tuesday,Dubai police appealed for an international manhunt after releasing names and photos of the 11-member hit squad accused of stalking and killing him.

“In the process it will also help to establish the innocence of the ordinary citizens and even of countries whose identities were stolen and fraudulently used,” it said.

Dubai’s police chief said he is certain Israel’s Mossad spy agency was behind the murder of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh at a Dubai hotel,a newspaper reported.

Al-Mabhouh was found dead in his luxury hotel room in January,and the Palestinian Islamist militant group has accused Israel of being behind the killing.

“Our investigations reveal that Mossad is involved in the murder of al-Mabhouh. It is 99 per cent,if not 100 per cent,that Mossad is standing behind the murder,” Dubai police chief Dahi Khalfan Tamim told The National newspaper.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Thursday that there was no reason to believe that Mossad had carried out the assassination. “Israel never responds,never confirms and never denies,” Lieberman said in Israel’s first official comment on the affair,then added: “I don’t know why we are assuming that Israel,or the Mossad,used those passports.”

Tamim said the Dubai Police had evidence linking the suspects in the case to people with a close connection to Israel,the newspaper said in a report carried on its website.

Meanwhile,a UAE official said that the number of suspects in the slaying has grown to at least 18.

Mossad chief Dagan won’t quit: Source

JERUSALEM: Mossad chief Meir Dagan sees no reason to resign over a scandal-fraught assassination in Dubai,and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is unlikely to ask him to,a confidant of the Israeli spymaster said on Thursday.

The confidant told Reuters: “Dagan has no intention of quitting before his tenure is completed.” Resignation would be tantamount to taking responsibility,the confidant said. Dagan,a former general,was appointed in 2002 with a mandate to take the fight to Israel’s foes abroad. Reuters

Israeli espionage scandals

1954: Egypt cracks Israeli Military Intelligence cell of Egyptian Jews who firebombed sites frequented by Westerners to embarrass Cairo and stop it nationalising the Suez Canal.

1963: Swiss police arrest an Israeli and an Austrian after a German scientist’s daughter accuses them of threatening her — part of a Mossad intimidation campaign against Germans suspected of helping an Egyptian missile programme.

1967: Two suspected Mossad officers arrested in Germany while breaking into a home believed to belong to a former official of the Nazi Gestapo. They are released as a goodwill gesture to Israel after the 1967 Middle East war.

1973: Mossad assassins shoot dead a Morocco-born waiter in Norway,mistaking him for one of the Palestinian masterminds of an attack on the 1972 Munich Olympics in which 11 Israeli athletes died. Five Mossad officers are tried,but released.

1985: US Navy analyst Jonathan Pollard is arrested for passing intelligence to Lakam,an Israeli agency. Israel apologises to the US and dismantles Lakam. Pollard is sentenced to life in prison.

1997: Two Mossad assassins are captured by Jordan after a failed attempt to kill Khaled Meshaal,a leader of Hamas. They are sent home after Israel frees Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin.

1998: A group of Israelis is discovered trying to tap the phones of a suspected Lebanese Hezbollah militant in Switzerland. In a closed-door trial,one Israeli,described as a Mossad officer,is fined and given a suspended jail sentence. In Cyprus,two suspected Mossad officers are charged with spying on sensitive military installations. They are released after nine months in prison. REUTERS

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