Report: New Zealand has proof detained Israelis are Mossad agents

Published July 20th, 2004 - 02:00 GMT

New Zealand has proof to support claims that the two Israelis arrested and sentenced last week on passport fraud charges are Mossad agents, the New Zealand Herald reported Tuesday. 


Elisha Cara, 50, and Uriel Kelman, 31, were jailed for six months last week, after an Auckland court found them guilty of seeking to obtain a New Zealand passport through illegal means and of belonging to a criminal organization.  


In addition, the two were fined 50,000 New Zealand dollars. 


Two other Israelis have been accused in the same case - Ze'ev William Barkan, 37, who fled New Zealand before he could be arrested, and a man whose name has not been released. 


According to the Tuesday's report, New Zealand intelligence services obtained concrete evidence that Cara and Kelman are Mossad agents by bugging their communications. 


Covert surveillance was undertaken after a New Zealand Internal Affairs officer became suspicious about the passport application, the paper said.  


New Zealand officials became suspicious when a man posing as a New Zealander spoke with a Canadian accent when calling the embassy to ask that his request for a New Zealand passport be expedited. 


In the aftermath of the event, the government of New Zealand announced a series of sanctions against Israel.  


Israel, for its part, will neither confirm nor deny the status of the prisoners. However, New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said last week there was no doubt that the pair, Cara and Kelman, were operatives of the Israeli intelligence agency.  


It should be mentioned that the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, has highly appreciated the "daring" position of the New Zealand government against Israel. 


A source within the Movement, in a press release distributed earlier this week, urged all countries to follow the model of the New Zealand stand in adopting firm measures against the Israel’s violations of laws on foreign lands to achieve certain targets. 


The source explained that it was not the first time for the Israeli security bodies, especially the Mossad to gain illegitimate means to achieve criminal acts. (

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