Dubai releases video on assassination team that hit Hamas
Dubai police on Monday named 11 European passport holders suspected of killing Hamas commander Mahmoud Mabhouh last month. It's only the latest in a number of high-profile international assassinations in Dubai in the past couple of years.
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Mabhouh – who was wanted by Israel for helping kidnap two Israeli soldiers and who was allegedly smuggling arms from Iran to Gaza – was found dead on Jan. 20, possibly by suffocation, according to forensic tests. Hamas has blamed Israel for the murder.Skip to next paragraph
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Cash, wigs, and a break-in
According to Dubai's police chief, Lt. Gen. Dahi Khalfan Tamim, the 11 suspects flew into Dubai at different times, six of them using British passports, three Irish, one French, and one German. They checked into different hotels, paying for all transactions in cash. They followed Mabhouh as soon as he left the airport – a few rode with him up his hotel elevator. They booked a room on the same floor. The woman sometimes wore a wig, hat, and sunglasses, while others donned baseball caps, tennis gear, or fake beards.
Dubai has issued arrest warrants for the suspects. It has also taken two Palestinians into custody for alleged involvement.
At a press conference on Monday, General Tamim did not blame Israel for the murder, though he noted, "Israel carries out a lot of assassinations in many countries, even in countries that it is allied to."
"The United Arab Emirates does not accept that its territory be used as an arena for settling scores, whatever their nature or cause or whatever the affiliation of those involved," he said in a statement,
The perpetrators will likely get caught, given the heavy surveillance blanketing the city, but such assassinations may continue unless Dubai takes greater precautions over whom it allows into the country, says Karasik. That means screening more closely both potential targets of assassination and the citizens of European and other countries who are welcomed in at the airport.
Dubai is "very safe,” he continues, noting that these incidents target individuals rather than random groups of people. “It’s just that some people are using it as a killing ground.”
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