Miliband. Won't be attending
Photo: AFP

'Diplomat to be expelled: Mossad rep'

Daily Telegraph deputy editor: Israeli to be expelled from London following passport crisis is Mossad representative. UK foreign secretary to address parliament with full details later Tuesday

The Israeli diplomat to be expelled from London following the Dubai assassination passport crisis is a Mossad representative, Daily Telegraph Deputy Editor Benedict Brogen wrote on his blog. The person in question, he says, received notice to leave the UK on Monday, before the story broke. Brogen also wrote that Israel and the UK agreed he should be described as a "senior diplomat."


At 5:30 pm (Israeli time), UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband will give a statement on the issue before the British parliament. He also cancelled his attendance at the reopening ceremony of the renovated Israeli Embassy in London which was due to take place one hour later.


The Israeli Embassy confirmed that Permanent Under-Secretary of the British Foreign Office Sir Peter Ricketts had met with Israel's ambassador to the UK Ron Prosor.


All Foreign Office staff members have been instructed to keep their mouths shut about the affair. Sources have said unofficially that they don't have any official news, and are waiting for clarifications. When the upper echelons decide, they said, they may be able to provide further details.


The British move raised the anger of Knesset members. MK Arieh Eldad (National Union) commented on British accusations of Israel regarding the assassination of Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai and compared the British people with dogs. "Who are they to judge us?" he added.


His faction colleague MK Michael Ben Ari asserted, "This is anti-Semitism dressed up as anti-Zionism."


However, Security and Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Tzachi Hanegbi (Kadima) recommended that Israel refrain from responding. "I am sure that refraining from responding was the right thing during the Dubai crisis, and even more important now, when the main crisis is behind us, it's best to avoid making things worse."


In a step unusual in its severity, London announced earlier that it intends to expel an Israeli diplomat due to the forged passports used in the assassination.


Earlier Tuesday, the Daily Telegraph reported that the body probing the involvement of British passport holders in the assassination is slated to formally name Israel as being behind the affair.


According to the report, Israeli Ambassador to London, Ron Prosor, was summoned by the Foreign Office on Monday to learn of the results of the investigation into the Dubai assassination.


A British ministerial statement to be made to the parliament will name the Israeli security services as responsible for the cloning of up to 12 British passports, which were allegedly copied after being taken away by airport officials for “checks” which lasted around 20 minutes.


Roni Sofer also contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 03.23.10, 13:54
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