JERUSALEM (Jul. 10)
Police Superintendent Mordechai Tavor warned today that Israel may face a new wave of parcel bombs mailed by Arab terrorists to prominent persons here and abroad. He said a booby-trapped parcel bomb that was defective may have caused the explosion that killed Ghassan Kanafani, a spokesman and propagandist for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, outside his home in a Beirut suburb Saturday.
Tavor said the PFLP, an extremist terrorist group which has claimed responsibility for the May 30 Lydda Airport massacre, may be planning a repetition of their parcel bomb campaign of six months ago. At that time an Israeli police sapper was killed opening one of 13 suspect parcels mailed from Europe to people in Israel.
Kanafani was killed as he entered his car. The blast also killed his niece. Superintendent Tavor said his parcel bomb theory rested on the discovery by Beirut police of a slip of paper near the wrecked car with the inscription, “Compliments of the Israel Embassy in Copenhagen.” He said the terrorists affixed such slips to their booby traps to make sure the recipient would open the parcel. He said they were printed by the thousands and easy to come by, noting that Kanafani’s wife is a Dane involved in the Palestinian terrorist movement, and that his brother, a press photographer, lives in Denmark.
(The Israeli Ambassador in Copenhagen, Moshe Leshem, dismissed as “ridiculous and absurd” claims by the PFLP that his Embassy had anything to do with Kanafani’s death. “Somebody is trying to divert attention from the real guilty party,” Ambassador Leshem told Danish reporters yesterday.)
El Fatah chief Yassir Arafat threatened “terrible vengeance against Israel” for Kanafani’s death yesterday, The PFLP meanwhile denounced the BBC correspondent in Beirut as an “employe of Israel” for having suggested that Kanafani’s killing may have been an assassination stemming from internecine strife between the PFLP and rival terrorist groups.