POLICE have 15 more suspects in the assassination of a Hamas leader
in Dubai, including three who were allegedly travelling on Australian
passports, CNN reported last night.
Included in the list of names suspected of killing Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in his hotel last month were Australian passport holders Nicole Sandra McCabe, Adam Marcus Korman and Joshua Daniel Bruce, all from Melbourne.
Mr Korman, 34, is Australian-born but lives in Tel Aviv, where he sells musical instruments, the ABC has reported.He told Israel’s biggest newspaper Yediot Aharonot he was shocked over what has happened.‘‘It’s identity theft, simply unbelievable,’’ he was quoted as saying.
‘‘I have travelled all over the world but never visited Dubai or the United Arab Emirates.’’
ABC radio also reported that Mr Bruce lives near Haifa in Israel's north.
It said that Mr Korman had told the Israeli paper that he was ‘‘frightened and shocked since receiving the news’’.Ms McCabe reportedly also lives in Israel and her family in
Australia had no knowledge of her name being linked to the Dubai
The Australians are joined by six more people who are
accused of using British passports in the commission of the crime, four
others using Irish passports and two other French passport holders, CNN
reported. Last week, Dubai revealed that 11 members of the
assassination squad, now believed to be 26-strong and including Mossad
agents, had entered the emirate carrying diplomatic passports and killed
Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in his Dubai hotel room last month.
Police have discovered the credit cards used by 14 of the suspects, issued by Meta Bank in the US, CNN reported. The cards were used to book hotel rooms and pay for air travel.
On Tuesday, the Israeli Opposition Leader, Tzipi Livni, praised the killing, which Dubai accuses Israel of organising. Israel has not commented about its involvement.
''The fact that a terrorist was killed, and it doesn't matter if it was in Dubai or Gaza, is good news to those fighting terrorism,'' she said.
The issue of the passports used has created a diplomatic
furore in which Israeli envoys in Ireland, Britain, Germany and France
have been called in for talks.
Police have traced the suspects' travel routes and their destinations before and after Mr Mabhouh's death.''The suspects gathered in Dubai and dispersed to various
locations before pairing up again in different teams and heading off to
other destinations,'' the statement said.
The Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, said this morning that it was the government’s ‘‘job to confirm the facts’’.‘‘But we will not be silent on this matter ... it really
goes to the integrity and fabric of the use of state documents, which
passports are, for other purposes," he said.‘‘That’s why we will not leave a single stone unturned.’’
Australian government officials would be contacting the families of three people named as passport holders, Mr Rudd said.Mr Rudd said the government would be looking at ways to
restore the integrity of the Australians involved if it was established
their passports had been forged.
Australia had prided itself on having one of the most ‘‘efficient, effective and secure’’ passport systems in the world.‘‘Australian travel documents generally are held in the highest regard ... that’s what really worries me as well,’’ he said.‘‘It’s not just the good name of Australia, it’s not just
our adherence to the principles of international law, it is also the
safety of the Australian travelling public.’’
The Foreign Minister, Stephen Smith, would make a more
detailed statement later today following his meeting with Israeli
ambassador, Mr Rudd said.
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