Spate of attacks: How many are Abu Nidal's?
On March 25, an assailant tried to capture an Alitalia crew in Bombay. He wounded the Italian captain and shot at pursuers until his gun jammed and two grenades failed to explode. Under questioning, he said he was a member of the Abu Nidal Organization and that his real target had been a Pan American jet. The grenades were of the same batch used by ANO elsewhere, experts say. On March 23, a sack of similar grenades and materials for a bomb had been found in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Bombay. Experts speculate the terrorist was surprised before he could set a bomb. Western intelligence officials interpret the action as part of an Iranian anti-Saudi campaign. They say ANO had earlier been in contact with Iranian agents.
April 9 and 16, two car bombs exploded in Amman, Jordan. No one was killed directly, but six died as an emergency truck turned over. The first bombing was claimed by Black September Organization - a cover used by ANO for attacks on Jordan. Experts see the bombs as a form of pressure on Jordan not to warm to the US Middle East peace plan.
May 10, a bomb exploded at a Citibank office in New Dehli, killing one. Indian police suspect Sikh extremists. US experts suspect either Hizbullah or Abu Nidal working on Iran's behalf.
May 11, a car bomb exploded near Israel's embassy in Cyprus, killing the driver and two passers-by. A telephone caller claimed the attack in the name of Abu Nidal, which is unusual. (The ANO did claim, however, the capture of eight French and Belgian boaters last November.) On April 18, Abu Nidal reportedly called the widow of slain PLO leader Abu Jihad and pledged to avenge her husband's killing with ``bullets and blood ... in the very near future.'' Experts are divided on whether ANO did the Cyprus bombing. US experts say it could have been the Lebanese terrorist group Hizbullah as well.
May 15, grenade and automatic-weapon attacks on a British club and hotel in Khartoum, Sudan, killed seven people and wounded 21. Three men with Lebanese passports were arrested and under interrogation said they were from ANO. Last week the Arab Fedayeen Cells - an ANO cover - claimed the attack. Experts see the attack as revenge for the Abu Jihad assassination, as Britain is the country that agreed to divide Palestine and create Israel.