RealNews

'85 Hijacker Is Captured in Baghdad

American forces in Baghdad today captured the leader of a Palestinian terrorist group responsible for the attack in 1985 on an Italian cruise ship, the Achille Lauro, in which an American was killed. The terrorist leader, Abu Abbas, led a faction of the Palestine Liberation Front in the 1980’s and 1990’s and has been living in Baghdad since 2000. He was captured in a raid by Special Forces and is now in American military custody, officials said. Under the protection of Saddam Hussein’s government, Abu Abbas, whose real name is Muhammad Abbas, had been living unhindered in Baghdad since leaving his home in the Gaza Strip, and his group had an office in the Iraqi capital. But he had been in hiding since the Iraqi government collapsed. Mr. Abbas, 54, is the first major terrorist figure found in Iraq by American forces since Mr. Hussein’s government fell. But American intelligence and law enforcement officials have not made a connection between his Palestinian group and Al Qaeda, and said they had no evidence to tie him to terrorist acts in recent years. Full Story

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