Menu JTA Search

South African Doctor, Palestinian, Identified As Black Septembrists

Two members of the Black September terrorist organization who were arrested Saturday, will be remanded in custody by a State Security Court tomorrow. They were identified today as Dr. Diane Campbell-Lefevre, a 31-year-old South African medical doctor and Jamil Abdel Hakim, 27, a Palestinian. French sources said that the police have little evidence to charge the physician who was born in Salisbury, Rhodesia and will most probably expel her from France to a country of her choice. Hakim is expected to be charged with using forged documents and illegal entry into France, the sources said.

The two were arrested in the Paris region on the basis of information obtained from two Jordanians who were caught March 15, carrying 30 pounds of explosives in their West German registered car.

Dr. Campbell-Lefevre and Hakim have reportedly admitted belonging to the Black September Organization. Dr. Campbell-Lefevre left for Beirut in 1971 after she obtained her medical degree at Cape Town University. In Lebanon where she worked in refugee camps she became interested in the Palestinian cause and helped El Fatah and other extremist organizations, it was reported.

French police believe that the young South African doctor acted as the Black September local liaison agent in France. They believe she was in charge of “logistics,” namely securing accommodations, money and travel documents for Black Septembrists. The Palestinian is believed to have had a lower rank and served mainly as her helper. French police, who have been questioning the pair since their arrest, do not believe a Black September headquarters or any training bases or arms depots exist in France.

(It was reported in London today that Dr. Campbell-Lefevre has been known for some time to the Special Branch at Scotland Yard because of her association with the Palestinian movement. She was also known at St. Ann’s Hospital in London where she worked on the medical staff in 1970-71.)

NEXT STORY