Israel admits killing Arafat deputy
on 01/11/2012 17:35:04
Two of those involved in the operation now hold high political office - Defence Minister Ehud Barak and Vice Premier Moshe Yaalon.
At the time, Mr Barak was deputy military chief, and Mr Yaalon was head of the Sayeret Matkal unit. Their precise roles in the operation were not divulged, and both men's offices declined comment.
Israel has long been suspected of assassinating Khalil al-Wazir, who was better known as Abu Jihad.
But only now has the country's military censor cleared the Yediot Ahronot daily to publish the information, including an interview with the commando who killed him, at least 12 years after the newspaper obtained the information.
"I shot him with a long burst of fire," the now-deceased commando Nahum Lev told Yediot.
"I was careful not to hurt his wife, who had showed up there. He died," Lev told Yediot before his death in a motorcycle accident in 2000.
"Abu Jihad was involved in horrible acts against civilians. He was a dead man walking. I shot him without hesitation."