Ukraine seeks answers on Palestinian's detention

AP News
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Posted: Mar 23, 2011 10:18 AM
Ukraine seeks answers on Palestinian's detention

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said Wednesday it plans to summon Israel's ambassador for an explanation of how a Palestinian engineer disappeared from Ukraine and ended up jailed in Israel.

Dirar Abu Sisi, 42, who is married to a Ukrainian and was applying for citizenship, was last seen in Ukraine while boarding a train on Feb. 19. Israel later confirmed he is in custody there, but has said little else about the case.

Abu Sisi's wife, Veronika, alleges he was abducted by the Israeli secret service Mossad in order to sabotage a key power plant in Gaza, where he worked as a top engineer.

Ukrainian law enforcement agencies said they were not involved, have no information on Abu Sisi's detention, and that foreign security agents are prohibited from operating on the Ukrainian territory.

The Foreign Ministry said it would soon seek an explanation from Zina Kalay-Kleitman, Israel's Ambassador to Ukraine, but gave no further details.

The Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights on Monday cited Abu Sisi as saying he was dragged out of his sleeper car, hooded and handcuffed by Israeli agents, forced onto a plane and taken to Israel.

The United Nations refugee agency has said Abu Sisi's trip to Israel resembled a "violent abduction" and not a legal extradition.

Abu Sisi's wife denied speculation that he was tied to Hamas militants. Abu Sisi is a senior official at Gaza's electric plant _ meaning he would need to have good relations with the Hamas government.

"This was a flagrant violation of the law, of another state's sovereignty and of human rights," Abu Sisi's wife told the Associated Press Wednesday. The couple has six children.