TEL AVIV (Dec. 27)
The infiltration of three Palestinian terrorists into Israel from Jordan Friday night has raised questions about security along the normally quiescent Israeli Jordanian border.
Israeli authorities still believe King Hussein is doing his best to prevent terrorist activity from Jordanian soil, according to a report in Hadashot Sunday. Terrorist leaders are exerting pressure on him, but the king is standing fast. He has informed the United States that while Palestine Liberation Organization offices are open in Amman, their activity is restricted, Hadashot reported.
Nevertheless, Friday’s infiltration, though short-lived, was unnerving. The three terrorists were captured alive after a brief shoot-out with security forces, shortly after they crossed the Jordan River near Maoz Chaim and Bet Shean, south of the Sea of Galilee. One of the three was wounded.
It was the first infiltration since Nov. 25, when a lone Palestinian riding a motorized hang glider, crossed the Lebanese border into upper Galilee and killed six Israel Defense Force soldiers at a military base and wounded seven, before he was shot to death.
Maariv reported Sunday that the three terrorists belong to the Palestine Liberation Front, a group headed by Mohammed (Abul) Abbas, who masterminded the October 1985 hijacking of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro in Egyptian waters.
According to Maariv, the infiltrators traveled from Iraq to Amman, where they were given kalachnikov assault rifles and other equipment and briefed on their mission. The head of the PLO military staff, Khalil Al-Wazir, also known as Abu Jihad, was in Jordan at the time, Maariv reported.
Al Hamishmar quoted Gen. Amram Mitzna, IDF commander of the central sector, as saying after the infiltration that the Jordanians are working to prevent terrorist activity aimed at Israel.