Dubai: Police revealed 15 more suspects in the Al Mabhouh murder case on Wednesday.
The extensive investigation has led to a total of 26 suspects so far involved in the murder of the Hamas official Mahmoud Al Mabhouh at a Dubai hotel.
In addition to the previously released list of 11 suspects, Dubai Police has now identified another six suspects, who include a woman who used British passports, a man and three women travelling on Irish passports, two men who used French passports, and three people with Australian passports. The Australians included a woman.
The new list of suspects include 15 names, bringing the total identified suspects to 26.
Dubai Police have released new CCTV footage
Earlier this month, Dubai Police had issued a list of 11 suspects and promised additional names as the investigation advanced.
Wednesday's list raises the total number of suspects who used British passports to 12 from six, and to six Irish passports users from three, and three French passport users from one and the naming of three additional suspects with Australian passports. This is in addition to a German passport holder announced earlier in February.
Friendly nations who have been assisting in this investigation have indicated to the police in Dubai that the passports were issued in an illegal and fraudulent manner, adding that the pictures on the travel documents did not correspond to the original owners.
The new list of suspects includes people who offered prior logistical support and preparations to facilitate the crime and others who played a central role.
Dubai Police investigators are not ruling out the possibility of involvement of other people in the murder stressing that the authorities are still conducting a wide search and receiving other links to the case.
The investigation by Dubai Police has also led to credit cards used by 14 of the suspects. The issuing bank (META bank) was also identified in the US. The cards were used to book hotel rooms and pay for travel.
British passport holders:
Daniel Marc Schnur, Gabriella Barney, Roy Allan Cannon, Stephen Keith Drake, Mark Sklur and Philip Carr.
Irish passports holders:
Ivy Brinton, Anna Shuana Clasby and Chester Halvey
French passport holders:
David Bernard LaPierre, Melenie Heard and Eric Rassineux
Australian passport holders:
Bruce Joshua Daniel, Nicole Sandra Mccabe and Adam Korman
In pictures: Details of prime suspects
Hamas praises Dubai probe
Meanwhile, a senior leader of Hamas in Lebanon told Gulf News on Wednesday that the seriousness of the investigation into the murder of a Hamas commander in Dubai is a relief to Hamas.
Reports on Tuesday said that the UAE has identified four more suspects in the killing of Hamas commander Mahmoud Al Mabhouh in his Dubai hotel room on January 19.
"This is a relief to us and comfort us as a party who is directly involved in this... [that] the UAE government is seriously working on the investigation to find out the killers of Al Mabhouh," Osama Hamdan said.
"What we request is to continue in these efforts to find the killers of Al Mabhouh and reach our goal in revealing the identity of the killers and how the assassination happened. We are ready to help in this matter, not on the basis of interfering with the UAE government but by our abilities and with the information we have," he added.
Dubai authorities last week released the identities of 11 people who travelled on forged British, Irish, French and German passports to kill Al Mabhouh, and said that two Palestinians suspected of providing logistical support were in custody.
Six people previously identified by Dubai as members of the hit squad are Britons living in Israel. They denied involvement and said their identities were stolen.
Officials have said at least 18 people may have been involved in the assassination.
Al Mabhouh was suffocated, a source in the UAE told Reuters on Tuesday, but the authorities were awaiting results of additional tests.
A slight to the UAE
Lebanon's Hamas leader, Hamdan, said the assassination of Al Mabhouh was a slight to UAE security.
"There are negotiations taking place between both sides in order to reach an agreement to cooperate in the process of finding the killers of Al Mabhouh, and we hope that it translates well, because this is a common interest for both sides," said Hamdan.
He also accused Israeli secret service Mossad as behind the murder. "We directly accuse the Israeli Mossad in killing Al Mabhouh, which is confirmed by the presence of traitors (agents) within the assassins," Hamdan said.
Dubai Police has said it is virtually certain that Israeli intelligence agency Mossad carried out the killing, and Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan vowed on Sunday to bring those responsible to justice.
With input from Rania Al Hussaini, Special to Gulf News