Israeli security sources have claimed that the Palestinian bus driver, who killed eight Israelis as he rammed a crowd of soldiers and civilians in south Tel Aviv Wednesday, carried out the attack premeditatedly to prove to Fateh movement he was not a collaborator with Israel, a report the PLO movement denied as baseless.
An Israeli news site named Inyan Merkazi quoted on Thursday Israeli sources as saying that Fateh activists had visited Khalil Abu Elbeh at his house in Gaza’s Sheikh Radwan neighborhood and accused him of being a "collaborator."
This threat convinced him to do what he did, the security sources claimed.
Meanwhile, Israel Radio reported the same day that the driver, who has been working for an Israeli bus company for five years, told his interrogators that he had planned the act a long time ago.
However, a Fateh leader denied the report as baseless reiterating that the attack was an individual act undirected by any organization.
“Abu Elbeh has no political affiliation; he is an ordinary person who was approved by the Israeli authorities to work there, and the PNA has also given him permission to work inside the Green Line,” said Hatem Adul Qader, member of Fateh’s Higher Committee in the West Bank and member of parliament.
In a statement to Albawba.com, Abdul Qader charged that Israel is trying to pin responsibility on the Palestinian leadership, to justify its campaign of assassinating key Palestinian leaders.
Abu Elbeh’s family and neighbors were quoted by reports as insisting he had nothing to do with politics, but was furious after the Israeli forces killed a major general at the Palestinian presidential guards (Force 17) when a helicopter fired a missile at him as he was driving to work near Jabalia camp on Tuesday.
Responsibility for the Tel Aviv assault was initially claimed by Hamas’s military wing, Izzidine Qassam Brigades and a previously unknown group naming itself Return Brigades – Albawaba.com