Minister Rehavam Ze'evi
Photo: GPO
Basel al-Asmar in court
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Rehavam Ze'evi's killer sentenced to 45 years in jail
Jerusalem District Court finds Basel al-Asmar guilty of murder, attempted murder, membership in terror group; orders he serve life term additional 20 years

The Jerusalem District Court sentenced Basel al-Asmar to 45 years in prison Tuesday for his part in the murder of former Tourism Minister Rehavam Ze'evi at Jerusalem's Hyatt hotel on October 17, 2001.


Asmar was convicted of murder, attempted murder and membership in a terror organization and sentenced to life imprisonment and an additional 20 years, to be served consecutively.


"We have no doubt that Asmar fully cooperated with Hamdi Quran in perpetrating the crime and had a major contribution to the act," judges Moshe Ravid, Orit Efal-Gabai and Aharon Farkash, who presided over the hearing, wrote in their ruling.


Hamdi Quran was convicted for his part in the murder in August 2007.


According the verdict's findings, Asmar and Quran joined the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) with the intent of carrying out multiple attacks in Israel. In September 2001 the PFLP set out to murder Ze'evi in retaliation for the killing of a senior PFLP operative by Israel.


Asmar, said the court, devised the assassination, which took place one month later.


Ze'evi, 75, was shot in the head on the eight floor of the Jerusalem Hyatt Hotel. He was immediately rushed to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital, where he later died of his wounds.


The decision to try the Palestinian assassinating cell – which included four operatives – in Israel, was made after they had already been sentenced to prison terms by the Palestinian Authority.


 new comment
See all talkbacks "Rehavam Ze'evi's killer sentenced to 45 years in jail"
This will delete your current comment