Hizbullah Link Admitted in Cyprus Plot

YERUSHALAYIM -

A Hizbullah link to a thwarted terrorist plot in Cyprus last July was revealed in court on Wednesday, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Hossam Taleb Yaacoub, a 24-year old Lebanese-Swedish dual citizen, accused of plotting an attack against Israeli tourists, admitted he is a member of Hizbullah, according to a statement he gave under oath.

Yaacoub faces eight charges in criminal court, including membership in a criminal organization and conspiracy in “carrying out missions in any part of the world, including the Cyprus Republic, against Israeli citizens.”

Yaacoub said at Wednesday’s court proceeding that Hizbullah is a political organization and he has knowledge of weapons but he came to Cyprus on business, without Hizbullah connections.

Yaacoub did, however, say he met with a Hizbullah agent who covered his face. It was unclear if the meeting took place in Cyprus, Lebanon or Sweden.

Yaacoub said he arrived in Cyprus with no intention to carry out a terror attack. The prosecution is slated to cross-examine Yaacoub on Thursday. The court case may run until March 7 and a verdict is anticipated in mid-March.

The Cyprus verdict could have significant implications for current EU deliberations over whether to label Hizbullah a terrorist organization.