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Military


15 May Organization

Description

Formed in 1979 from remnants of Wadi Haddad's Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-Special Operations Group (PFLP-SOG). Led by Muhammad al-Umari, who is known throughout Palestinian circles as Abu Ibrahim or the bomb man. Group was never part of PLO. Reportedly disbanded in the mid-1980s when several key members joined Colonel Hawari's Special Operations Group of Fatah.

Activities

Claimed credit for several bombings in the early-to-middle 1980s, including hotel bombing in London (1980), El Al's Rome and Istanbul offices (1981), and Israeli Embassies in Athens and Vienna (1981). Anti-US attacks include an attempted bombing of a Pan Am airliner in Rio de Janeiro and a bombing on board a Pan Am flight from Tokyo to Honolulu in August 1982. (The accused bomber in this last attack, Mohammed Rashid, is currently jailed in Greece following his conviction for the bombing, which killed a Japanese teenager.)

Strength

50 to 60 in early 1980s.

Location/Area of Operation

Baghdad until 1984. Before disbanding, operated in Middle East, Europe, and East Asia, Abu Ibrahim is reportedly in Iraq.

External Aid

Probably received logistic and financial support from Iraq until 1984.



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