HELIOPOLIS, CAIRO, EGYPT
Egyptian security agents have revealed that four Libyan-financed mercenaries-two Britons and two Maltese-were caught in an attempt to assassinate a prominent Libyan opposition politician now living in Cairo.
HELIOPOLIS, CAIRO, EGYPT
1. GV Heliopolis street, view of ex-minister's house. 0.04
2. SV INTERIOR Al-Bakoush shakes hands with Interior Minister Ahmed Rushdi (on right with glasses) (English SOT) 0.21
3. SV Al-Bakoush at microphones at press conference, seated next to Rushdi speaking. (English SOT) 0.57
4. CUs Still photos of faked assassination of Bakoush.(2 SHOTS) 1.06
5. CU Bakoush at press conference. (English SOT) (2 SHOTS) 2.13
6. SVs EXTERIOR Mubarak at press conference. (English SOT) 3.20
7. SV INTERIOR Three accused, interviewed by Egyptian TV reporter; Tony Gill (seated with glasses) (English SOT) 3.53
RUSHDI: (SEQ 2)"Abdul-Hamid Al-Bakoush is alive. He didn't die as Gaddafi said."
AL-BAKOUSH: "Good evening, everybody, sallam aleykum."
RUSHDI: (SEQ 3)"Scene that Mr. Abdul-Hamid Al-Bakoush is assassinated I sent these pictures to Malta, and from Malta, as I said before, to Gaddafi at Crete. When Gaddafi saw the pictures, he was convicted (convinced) that he's already assassinated and ordered the broadcast of (indistinct) to declare about this case. And about the falldown..."
AL-BAKOUSH: (SEQ 5) "I have passed this experience recently which proved to me, and I think it should prove to you all and to the whole world, that Gaddafi lost his qualifications as a ruler, as a legitimate ruler, and he has proved and confessed with that act, he is an international criminal who should be sought by international tribunals. And I would call on all civilised governments in the world to take an action, an attitude, toward the terrorism and the crimes Gaddafi and his organs are committing openly over the world. I would like also to tell my Libyan people that I have never considered my life as a big price to be paid for their freedom and salvation from the rule of ignorance and terrorism, I will sacrifice my life for them, for their freedom, and thank you all."
REPORTER: (SEQ 6) "Has there been any communication from Mr. Gaddafi, either indirectly or directly, since these details came out yesterday?"
MUBARAK: "No,no. He just tried to contact me - not me directly - two days before I leave for France and Germany. This representative was going to send (indistinct) me that it seemed that I understood something in a wrong way. That's what he thinks. Just I didn't give him an answer, but frankly I realise that something's going to happen. This man knows whenever he violates our borders we are going to react vehemently. I hope, and I pray God, that nothing will take place on our borders. I'm not going to plan any attack against any of our neighbours under any circumstances, unless to protect ourselves."
REPORTER (ETV): (SEQ 7) "When did you start co-operating with the Libyans?"
GILL: "Virtually the same night as I arrived - oh, the Libyans, I'm sorry, I do apologise, Oh, it was some time in July, some time in July when I first met them."
REPORTER: "And for these men?"
GILL: "These people, this was rather later. This would have been probably, I think I'm right in saying October some time, October. I can't remember the exact dat, but it was October,"
REPORTER: "Thank you very much."
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: HELIOPOLIS, CAIRO, EGYPT
Egyptian security agents have revealed that four Libyan-financed mercenaries-two Britons and two Maltese-were caught in an attempt to assassinate a prominent Libyan opposition politician now living in Cairo. Former Libyan Prime Minister Abdul-Hamid Al-Bakoush, a bitter foe of Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, was the target of a plot apparently hatched earlier this year by the Gaddafi regime to eliminate another outspoken political opponent. Briton Anthony Gill, 43, and the two Maltese nationals, Romeo Nicholas,42, and Edgar Cacchia, 40, were presented on Egyptian television on November 17 to explain their involvement in the murder attempt; the fourth man. Briton Godfrey Chiner, 47, did not appear. According to Egypt's Interior Minister Ahmed Rushdi, his intelligence agents began infiltrating the commando group several weeks ago, and started detaining the four men in late October and early November. It was quickly established that Al-Bakoush was the target, with another aim being to collect top secret data in Cairo about the Egyptian Air Force's US-built F-16 high performance jet fighters - and if possible, to steal one for the Tripoli regime. Bakoush and his wife left their house in Cairo's Heliopolis suburb on November 11 and were flown secretly to Aswan. Meanwhile, Egyptian security officials faked photographs of Bakoush's assassination - with his body supposedly covered in blood. The photographs were then carried by an Egyptian undercover agent to the Libyan Embassy in Malta, which in turn flashed the information to Gaddafi in Elounda, Crete, where he was meeting French President Francois Mitterrand. After Libya's Jana news agency released the information on November 16 that Bakoush, 46, had been "eliminated", Egyptian officials produced the Libyan opposition leader at a televised news conference on November 17, during which he and Interior Minister Ahmed Rushdi declares that "the war against Libyan terrorism is not over".
Source: REUTERS CAIRO/ETV