February 18, 2010 / 5:41 PM / 10 years ago

Interpol issues notice for Hamas murder suspects

PARIS (Reuters) - Interpol issued a notice on Thursday to help police to track down 11 people wanted by Dubai authorities for their suspected involvement in the killing of a Hamas militant in the emirate last month.

Interpol said it had reason to believe the suspects had stolen the identities of real people, using them as aliases to commit the murder of Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh.

The organization had made public the names and photos on the passports to restrict the suspects’ ability to travel, but urged police to focus on the pictures in deciding who to question and detain, it added in a statement.

“Since the names on the passports discovered as part of the Dubai Police’s investigation are most likely the names of real and innocent people whose identities have been stolen, Interpol does not believe that we know the true identities of these wanted persons,” Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble said.

Noble said Interpol had included the names fraudulently used “because if any of the persons pictured on the Interpol red notice were found in possession of fraudulently altered or counterfeit passports, then such possession would be evidence of guilt for a variety of crimes.”

Interpol’s “red notices” are not international arrest warrants but are put out after national authorities issue a warrant to help with finding suspects so they can be arrested or extradited.

In this case, the red notices were requested by Dubai police and Interpol’s bureau in Abu Dhabi, the international police organization said on its website www.interpol.int.

Dubai’s police chief said on Thursday he believed Israeli agents were behind the killing. Dubai authorities said British, French, German and Irish passports were used in the operation.

Reporting by Sophie Taylor; Editing by Elizabeth Fullerton

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