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Intelligence

German secret service silent on alleged German role in Hamas murder

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Berlin, Feb 17, IRNA -- Germany's foreign intelligence service BND refused to comment on an Arab newspaper report which alleged that a German national was implicated in the killing of a prominent Hamas leader in the United Arab Emirates, German press said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the a spokeswoman for the German Federal Crime Office confirmed that her agency was dealing with the case.

"We are exchanging information with the police in Dubai," she said.

On Tuesday, a spokesperson for the German foreign ministry claimed he had no independent information on the issue.

He added the German Embassy in the UAE had yet to get involved in the murder file of Mahmoud Abdel-Raouf Mohammed Hassan, also known as Mahmoud al- Mahbouh.

The Hamburg-based weekly news magazine Der Spiegel identified the German murder suspect as 43-year-old Michael B.

The 50-year-Hamas official was found dead in his hotel room on January 20, a day after arriving in Dubai.

Police in the United Arab Emirates have named 11 Europeans, three Irish, six British, one French and one German citizen as suspects in the brutal killing, the regional daily al-Sharq al-Awsat reported earlier.

UAE police has pointed to the role of Israel's notorious Mossad secret service as the likely mastermind of the fatal assassination.

Mossad death squads have in the past used German passports for secret operations although some of them had been forged by them, according to press reports.

Germany and Israel have a very deep military and intelligence cooperation whose details remain highly secretive to the German public.

OT**1416

End News / IRNA / News Code 965788



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