Palestinian engineer Dirar Abu Sisi on Thursday spoke for the first time since his disappearance in the Ukraine last month and denied having any information on captive soldier Gilad Shalit. "I don’t know anything about Gilad Shalit. They asked me. I don't know anything. I'm an engineer," he said outside the Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court before his remand was extended.
Police said an indictment will be filed against him.
The 42-year-old engineer disappeared from a train in Ukraine on February 19, and three weeks later the United Nations Refugee Agency accused Israel of commissioning the abduction with intention to bring him to the Jewish state. Israel confirmed early last week that it was holding Abu Sisi, but the details surrounding the case remain under a gag order.
Reporters met Abu Sisi for the first time on Thursday. "I was abducted from the Ukraine," he said. He repeated this several times and denied the allegations against him.
Abu Sisi in court. 'I'm just an engineer' (Photo: Yaron Brener)
"I was questioned about Shalit and said I had nothing to do with it. I don't know anything on the Gilad Shalit issue," he said. He denied all the other allegations against him, which are still under a gag order. "Everything they say I did is a lie." He later asked to send his love to gis wife and children in the Ukraine.
Abu Sisi's attorneys Smadar Ben Natan and Tal Linoy said he continues to deny all the allegations.
Veronica Abu Sisi with brother-in-law (Photo: AP)
Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Israel National Radio that he cannot confirm the report Abu Sisi was questioned regarding Shalit. "There is no direct link, he didn't organize the abduction or guard Shalit, but he is a person with intimate internal information on Hamas. This has value, not only in connection to Shalit."
Barak added: "The fact that he's here is justified. It's not as if someone suddenly decided he didn't like the fact that Palestinians were going around all sorts of places in the world."
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Channel 2 that Abu Sisi "is a Hamas man and is being held in Israel.
"I don’t want to comment on the connection to Shalit; I can only say that he (Abu Sisi) disclosed valuable information," the PM said.
Abu Sisi's wife Veronica denied on
Wednesday the German newspaper Der Spiegel's report that her husband was taken because he has information on the captive Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit.
Meanwhile, Noam Shalit, father of captive soldier Gilad Shalit had a phone conversation with Veronica via Israel National Radio. Veronica told Shalit that their situations were the same - both her husband and his son had been kidnapped "without foundation."
Shalit discussed the possibility of bringing their loved ones home saying that Abu-Sisi could be home within days as a prisoner exchange deal was on the table if the Hamas leaders were willing. Yet Veronica rejected his statements saying that her husband had no connection to either Hamas or Gilad Shalit. She added that Shalit was not her problem, her husband was.