TEL AVIV (Aug. 15)
Sources in Jerusalem were quoted Monday in Haaretz as saying that peace activist Abie Nathan met in Tunis with Abu Mazem, one of the advisers to Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasir Arafat.
Nathan’s alleged flight to Tunis, now headquarters of the PLO, was discussed briefly at Sunday’s daily meeting of top Foreign Ministry staff, but the Ministry refrained from issuing any kind of official statement.
An Israeli law provides up to three years’ imprisonment for “an Israeli citizen or resident who knowingly, and without authorization, has contact in Israel or abroad with a person who fills a function in the executive council or other similar body in a terrorist organization, or who serves as an official representative of a terrorist organization.”
Nathan declined to deny or confirm that he had indeed visited Tunisia. He has denied reports that he met with Arafat.
In June, four Israelis were convicted for having met with PLO representatives in Romania in November 1986.
Sources in Jerusalem believe that the attorney general will have no choice but to recommend a police investigation, in light of that precedent.
Davar reported that Tehiya party member Avi Farhan has already submitted a complaint to the police against Nathan.
Israel radio correspondent Shimon Shiffer reported from Washington yesterday that Nathan had actually met with Arafat.
Shiffer reported that Nathan left the office of a high-ranking official in Washington, although it is not clear how he deduced from this that Nathan had met with Arafat.
Nathan is owner of a boat called “Peace Ship,” which broadcasts music and peace slogans.