Israel Claims Palestinians Planning to Assassinate Army Chief
Israel has intensified security arrangements aimed at ensuring the personal safety of army chief of staff Shaul Mofaz after security agencies received information that the Islamic groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad are planning to assassinate the top officer, Israeli sources said.
Mofaz has recently accused the PNA of turning into “a terrorist entity,” and warned that the Israeli army would "go one step further" to put down violence "if the Palestinian Authority does nothing to stop it.”
The threats provoked angry reactions from the Palestinians and President Yasser Arafat said: "What is there left to use? Nuclear weapons?"
The Israeli army has undertaken a policy of assassinating field leaders of the Intifada, carrying out more than 23 killings since the beginning of the Intifada. These have targeted leaders from Fateh, Hamas and Islamic Jihad among others.
Former Israeli prime minister, Ehud Barak, and other officials have defended the policy as one means of stopping the Palestinian “terrorism.”
Meanwhile, the Israeli sources said that security people in Israel are furious at statements by Arab MK Issam Makhoul demanding a halt to these operations.
“If General Mofaz’s crimes are not stopped, he will have to stand trial before an international court,” the MK has said.
The sources believe that such remarks incite the Palestinians to act against Mofaz – Albawaba.com
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