PARIS (Jan. 1)
The Israeli secret service implicates Algeria, Libya and Iraq directly in last month’s attack by Palestinian and European terrorists on the headquarters of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna in which three persons were killed and 11 oil ministers kidnapped. According to the newspaper France Soir, the Israelis are convinced that Algeria organized and supervised, the operation in collaboration with the other two Arab countries and extremist Palestinian terrorist groups.
If the Israeli view is as reported, it coincides remarkably with the charge published today in the semi-official Egyptian newspaper Al Abram that the Vienna assault was masterminded by one Dr. Wadi Haddad and financed by Libya with the collaboration of Algeria.
France Soir, which did not identify its sources of information, said today that the Israeli secret service learned that the attack on OPEC followed a secret meeting in Baghdad attended by Haddad, by a wanted international terrorist known as Carlos Martinez, an Algerian representative and a Libyan delegate, Haddad is in charge of military operations of George Habash’s Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a Marxist terrorist group that split from the PLO.
SEVERAL QUESTIONS RAISED
All Hamdi Gammal, editor of Al Ahram, said, however, that the attack was carried out by the Libyan-backed Popular Revolutionary Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a splinter organization of the PFLP. “Why did the Algerian authorities allow the guerrillas to travel to Libya instead of trying them or handing them over to the Palestine Liberation Organization to try them?” he asked.
He also questioned the reason behind last Sunday’s meeting between Libyan leader Col Muammar Qaddafi and President Houari Boumediene of Algeria. “All these indications and information make us wonder whether there was a premeditated agreement on this operation,” Gammal wrote.
PLANS FINALIZED IN LIBYA
The France Soir article said Israeli intelligence learned that the four men who attended the secret Baghdad meeting prepared plans for the Vienna attack which were finalized in Tripoli, Libya, After a stay in Libya, Carlos went to West Germany to recruit some members of the Baader-Meinhof, an anarchist group. The terrorists arrived is Vienna on Dec. 19 and carried out the attack according to plan although the killing of three people was a blunder that temporarily embarrassed the Algerians, France Soir said.
Carlos Martinez is still at large and may be hiding out in Libya. He is wanted in France for the murder last June of two French secret service agents and a Lebanese informer.