Americans Will Do Anything to Slaughter the Palestinians
February 18, 2010
Hunt for mystery assassins
Eleven killers murdered Mahmoud al-Mabhouh while cameras watched, write Paul Lewis, Julian Borger and Rory McCarthy.
As soon as Mahmoud al-Mabhouh walked out into the foyer of
Within five hours, the Palestinian militant would be dead, the apparent victim of a sophisticated team of killers dispatched to end his life in what officials in
Mabhouh was so closely shadowed that, within seconds of passing immigration control, he was forced to manoeuvre his baggage trolley around one of his would-be assassins, a man in a white baseball cap and T-shirt talking casually on a mobile phone. On Tuesday night Dubai confirmed it had instigated an international manhunt after law enforcement officials issued arrest warrants for 11 individuals accused of the ''premeditated murder'' of Mabhouh, 49, a senior figure from the militant group Hamas, in a case that could have a profound impact on Middle East diplomacy.
This combination image shows 11 suspects wanted in connection with the killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh. Photo: AP
Hamas has blamed the Israeli foreign intelligence agency, Mossad, for the killing.
Reports have emerged that at least three of the European identities used by the killers were stolen from Britons living in
After going for a walk around the city, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh returns to his fate.
The allegations were met with some scepticism in
According to the detailed but unverified account given on Monday by
When Mabhouh arrived in
The first two suspected assassins used the names Michael Bodenheimer and James Clarke, and respectively carried German and British passports. They were followed 30 minutes later by the only female member, Gail Folliard, and Kevin Daveron. Both carried Irish passports and arrived on a flight from
The pair were said to have taken separate taxis to the same hotel, in what appears to have been the first in a series of repeated, meticulous decoys and counter-espionage techniques.
Throughout their 19 hours in the emirate, members of the gang used cash rather than credit cards for their transactions and almost continuously changed their identities, switching outfits and wearing wigs and glasses as disguises,
The CCTV footage showed Daveron appeared to have undergone the most extreme transformation, appearing in a hotel lobby as a bald man in a suit, before reappearing with thick black hair and glasses.
By the time Mabhouh arrived in
Two Palestinians believed to have been involved in the operation are in UAE custody after being handed over by
Senior Hamas figures have denied reports that the commander was en route to
However, if the evidence presented by
After his assassins made an initial sighting at the airport,
Footage from the reception desk showed Mabhouh checking in at 3.25pm, as two individuals in tennis outfits - identified by
As a member of staff showed Mabhouh to his room, the assassins dressed as tennis players quickly followed him into the elevator, in what police said was an attempt to note down his room number.
Half an hour later, in another part of the city, it was claimed that Elvinger called Al-Bustan Rotana to book room 237 - opposite Mabhouh's room.
Mabhouh returned to his room from a walk around the city at about 8.30pm. He is thought to have been suffocated.
Guardian News & Media