TEL AVIV (Feb. 10)
An alert taxi dispatcher in Ashkelon was credited by police with overting a terrorist bombing in the center of that town and assisting in the capture of two suspects.
The incident occurred last Thursday when Gaston Barda, the dispatcher, noticed an Arab depositing an object in a trash can near a bus stop. He and several cab drivers seized the Arab and held him under guard in the taxi office while summoning police. At the same time, he spotted another Arab fleeing the vicinity. When the police car arrived, Barda got in and directed the officers to the Gaza road where a taxi carrying the Arab was stopped and the second suspect was detained. The subsequent police investigation resulted in the arrest of several other suspects.
The object placed in the trash can turned out to be a bomb containing 200 grams of high explosives, enough to cause serious causalities had it detonated. In the event, the bomb was safely dismantled.