17 April 2002

Louai Ouda, PFLP and Tanzim operative, was involved in the murder of Rechavam Ze’evy and other terrorist attacks

(Communicated by Israel security sources)

Louai Ouda, 24 years of age, and a resident of Ramallah, has been an operative of the PFLP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine) and the Fatah Tanzim organization. He was arrested by the IDF, in the course of Operation Defensive Shield. During questioning, he admitted his involvement in the terrorist murder of late Minister Rechavam Ze’evy, as well as his involvement in the execution of a number of suicide bombings.

During his questioning, he admitted that he received instructions from Ahad Ulma, a wanted terrorist of the PFLP, and one of those responsible for the killing of Rechavam Ze’evy. Ulma has been hiding out in Arafat’s headquarters in Ramallah. Louai Ouda rented a car that was used by the terrorist group carrying out the murder. After Ze’evy was killed, the Palestinian Authority Preventive Security apparatus arrested Louai Ouda, but he was later released.

During questioning, he added that during his stay in the Palestinian Authority jail, the senior Fatah operative in Samaria, Nasser Aweis, recruited him for operations in the Fatah Tanzim terrorist organization. Aweis proposed to Louai Ouda that he assist suicide bombers to infiltrate into Israel, in order to carry out suicide bombings. Ouda accepted the proposal.

Following his release from prison, Nasser Aweis introduced Ouda to Muhammad Salah who was interested in carrying out a suicide bombing. Ouda established contact with Ahmed Barghouti, the nephew of Marwan Barghouti, who turned himself over to the IDF on April 15, 2002. He requested that Barghouti provide the suicide bomber with accommodation and an explosive belt, which he did. Ouda contacted an additional person to examine ways of reaching the neighborhood of French Hill, in Jerusalem, as well as to identify possible targets for the suicide bombing attack. The person in question later transported the terrorist to French Hill. The attack was foiled, when the suicide bomber was intercepted and killed on March 8, 2002.

Ouda added that after the attack was foiled, Nasser Aweis established a new terrorist cell headed by Ahmed Barghouti. The members of the cell planned to manufacture and operate explosive charges. To this end, he was given 8000 shekels by Ahmed Barghouti to purchase explosives. The cell was instructed to detonate the explosives against an armored IDF jeep.

The arrest of Louai Ouda follows a string of other arrests carried out by the IDF in the course of Operation Defensive Shield. The purpose of the Operation is to eliminate the extensive terrorist infrastructure in the West Bank.