Prisoner X 'shared Mossad secrets'

2013-02-18 13:05
Australian newspapers lead their front pages in Australia with the story of Ben Zygier after Israel confirmed it jailed a foreigner in solitary confinement on security grounds who later committed suicide. (File, AFP)

Australian newspapers lead their front pages in Australia with the story of Ben Zygier after Israel confirmed it jailed a foreigner in solitary confinement on security grounds who later committed suicide. (File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Sydney - Suspected Mossad agent Ben Zygier was arrested by his Israeli employer because the dual national had shared secrets with Australia's spy agency, the national broadcaster ABC said on Monday.

Zygier was found hanged in his cell in December 2010 after being held incommunicado for 10 months.

ABC revealed last week that Zygier, the son of a well-known Melbourne Jewish family, was the mysterious "Prisoner X" held for national security reasons in maximum-security Ayalon prison.

The network said Zygier was one of three Australian Jews who changed their names several times and took out new passports for travel in the Middle East and Europe while working for Mossad.

It said, citing unnamed sources, that Zygier had met with Australia intelligence officers and told them about Mossad operations, including plans for a secret mission in Italy.

Zygier, a lawyer who left Australia for Israel in 2000, had served in the Israeli military before taking a law degree at Melbourne University. He is said to have used the surnames Alon, Allen and Burrowes and had applied for a work visa to Italy.

The report said Zygier, who was 34 when he died, had set up a communications company in Europe for Mossad that employed the two other Australian dual citizens and exported electronic components to Arab countries as well as to Iran.

No request for consular assistance


Australia knew Israeli authorities were detaining Zygier just days after his 2010 arrest, Foreign Minister Bob Carr said last week.

"The Australian government was informed in February 2010 through intelligence channels that the Israeli authorities had detained a dual Australian-Israeli citizen, and they provided the name of the citizen in relation to serious offences under Israeli national security legislation," Carr said.

The foreign minister said the Australian government had not received a request for consular assistance from Zygier's family and had not interceded on his behalf.

Zygier's body was flown to Melbourne seven days after his death and buried in Chevra Kadisha Jewish Cemetery. Family and friends refused to speak to the press.

Zygier's detention coincided with a spat between Israel and Australia over Mossad's methods. In May 2010, then-foreign minister Stephen Smith expelled the Israeli station chief in Canberra after Mossad was found to have forged the passports of four dual nationals.

The passports had reportedly been used in what is believed to be a Mossad operation to assassinate Mahmoud al-Mabhouh of the Islamist Palestinian group Hamas in Dubai in January 2010.

It is not known whether the two cases were linked.

- SAPA
Read more on:    australia  |  israel  |  espionage
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Africa
 

Hottie of the day: Charlotte

Meet our hottie of the day, Charlotte. She feels sexiest after a good workout at the gym!

 
 

Men24.com

This is why guys shouldn’t be in photos
BMW drift battle: M235i vs. speedway bike
Want to start talking dirty?
And this year's Miss Bumbum title goes to...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Enjoy the view because as from tomorrow you are going to need to come back down to earth and join the party. In the meantime use...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.