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03 December 2023

Israel asked Palestinians to kill militant: report


Top Israeli and Palestinian officials discussed killing a Palestinian militant and British security urged Palestinian police to intern Hamas leaders, documents leaked late on Tuesday suggested.

The documents cited what they said was a 2005 conversation between Palestinian interior minister Nasr Yousef and Israeli Defence Minister Shaul Mofaz in which they talked about assassinating a prominent militant, Hassan Al Madhoun.

The report by Al Jazeera television quotes Mofaz as asking Yousef: “Why don’t you kill him?”
“We gave instructions to (Palestinian West Bank security chief) Rasheed (Abu Shabak) and we will see,” Yousef replied.

Madhoun, of the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, a militant group linked to the secular Fatah faction of Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, was killed in an Israeli missile strike in Gaza in late 2005, after Mofaz ordered a resumption of targeted killings of militants after a mall bombing killed five Israelis.

The reported discussion is contained in more than 1,600 files detailing over a decade of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians that Al Jazeera began leaking on Sunday night.

The latest batch also shows that Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service, MI6, proposed a plan to encourage the Palestinian security agencies to detain Palestinians without trial in a bid to weaken militant groups like the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades and the armed wings of Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

An alleged British document discusses “degrading the capabilities” of the groups “through the disruption of their leadership communications and command and control capabilities.”

“We could also explore the temporary internment of leading Hamas and PIJ (Palestinian Islamic Jihad) figures, making sure they are well-treated, with EU funding,” it added.