BONN (Sep. 25)
The West German terrorists who attacked a vice minister of finance here last week may have ties to the Palestine Liberation Organization or other Palestinian groups, government officials said over the weekend.
The Red Army faction took credit for the attack, from which Finance Vice Minister Hans Tietmeyer emerged unscathed. Only his limousine was damaged.
Sources familiar with the investigation noted that the attackers identified themselves as the “Khaled Aker Commando” in a letter they sent to the West German news media.
The last sentence in the letter reads “Solidarity with the rebellion of the Palestinian people.”
A spokesman for the Interior Ministry, Michael-Andreas Butz, said that Khaled Aker was one of two Palestinian guerrillas killed by Israeli security forces while trying to infiltrate Israel from Lebanon in November 1987.
The naming of the German terrorist squad after a Palestinian suggests ideological and operational ties, according to experts here.
The Red Army faction did it either to reward the Palestinians for something “or as a signal that they expect something from the Palestinian organizations,” one authority said.
“Experience suggests that the naming is by no means an accident,” he added.
Tietmeyer was attacked because he has been heavily involved in preparing the upcoming meeting of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in West Berlin.
The letter from the “Khaled Aker Commando” denounced the meeting as another step in what it called the endless exploitation of the Third World.