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The Terrorist Dentists - Colleague of a Former Minister

Autor: Marina Constantinoiu 26 Oct 2005 - 00:00
The Terrorist Dentists  -  Colleague of a Former Minister

The case of the two former Arabian Israeli students from the Dentistry Faculty in Cluj, who became members of Hamas, continues to draw the attention of the press in Romania and Israel. This time, the lawyer of one of the defendants comes in front to gether with the father of the other defendant, who denies any connection of them with Hamas.

The two Arabian Israeli dentists, who have been accused of helping Hamas to launch anti-Israeli attacks, have been incriminated by the District Court in Haifa on Monday for "collaboration with the enemy during war".

The Israeli daily newspapers, Haaretz and Ynet (the lectronic edition of Yediot Aharonot) have published new details regarding the case of the two dentists yesterday. For Ynet, "the scandal is the last of the examples of connections with the terrorist networks discovered in Romania". The article named "The Romanian Wing of Terror", the author of the article published by Ynet wonders if one of the two suspects was a collaborator for Hamas as well as "informer of the Romanian secret services", by taking over an information leaked by an anonymous source from the newspapers in Bucharest.

After a detailed review of the reasons for which Husein Nazmi and abdel salam Zidan have been arrested and incriminated in Israel, the reminded publications add the fact that, although Shin Beth, the internal security services, who took part in their catching, says that the suspects admitted to have connections to Hamas, their families say the contrary.


Ziad Zidan, father of Salam Zidan, denies the fact that his son had connections to the Palestinian organization, the author of many anti-Israeli terrorist attacks. He and his family are convinced that Salam is innocent, Haaretz states.

The father of the suspect stated that, indeed, Hamas contacted Salam in 1998 and tried to recruit him, but he refused categorically. Salam seems to have had another experience with Hamas in 2002, according to his father. It happened during a trip to Mecca, in Saudi Arabia. Ziad says his son refused again Hamas’s recruitment tries.


"From the talks we had with the security officers, I realized that my son hadn’t been recruited and didn’t plan any operation against the state. His mistake was that he didn’t tell the security forces about the Hamas recruitment attempts", Salam Zidan’s father stated for Haaretz.

In his turn, the lawyer of the other suspect, Nazmi Hussein, says that his client would have denied categorically any connection of his with Hamas or any other terrorist organization. Moreover, according to the same lawyer, his client wouldn’t have any involvement in politics. According to Shin Beth, the terrorist organizations prefer recruiting Arabian Israelis, because they enjoy the freedom to move on the territory of Israel. Shin Beth adds that these imitate the Iran model, which, in the past years, recruited arabian Israelis for Hesbollah, the pro-Iranian Lebanese Militia.


In Romania, the news that Nazmi Hussein and Abdel Salam Zidan have been recruited isn’t seen as true either. Hmmad Ghazi, representative of the Arabian-Muslim League in Cluj, stated for Mediafax, that he didn’t believe in the sayings of the Israeli security: "There is always something happening in Israel. All the people that come from abroad after their studies are convicted. They are checked and freed. I wonder if this is true", Ghazi stated.

He says he didn’t know the two because they had Israeli passports and didn’t mingle with the rest of the Arabian community in Cluj-Napoca. "They could have been praying in the mosque in the Pasteur street, the only one in town, if they were Muslims, but I didn’t meet them", the representative of the Arabian-Muslim community in Cluj stated.


SRI ( the Romanian secret services) banished 17 sympathizers of Hamas between 1989 and 2005, an antiterrorist officer stated for Jurnalul National. In the same time, "SRI communicated data and information about approximately 50 people resident in Romania to the Israeli partners. These residents used to work for the Muslim Brothers and Hamas terrorist organizations. "The cooperation between SRI and the Israeli security service have evolved in time and cover all the terrorist-Islamic organizations, and Hamas especially", the source added. He also mentioned that the good cooperation led to the taking of some preventive measures for the Romanian and Israeli national security. According to the SRI officer, "the Hamas activity was and is attentively supervised in order to identify any news appeared in the evolution of the organization in Romania, as well as in the organizing structure". (Razvan Belciuganu)

They didn’t Go for the Specialization

THE SUSPECTS. Abdel Salam Zidan and Hussein Nazmi will stay in arrest during the trial.

Nazmi was an absolutely normal student, at least he appeared as one, say his former colleagues from the Dentistry Faculty in Cluj. Jurnalul National found out that Abdel Salam Zidan, who graduated one year before Nazmi, in 1993, had been a colleague of Alina Maior, the daughter of the former Education Minister, Liviu Maior (1992 - 1996).


"What’s his name?... You know how it is with these Arabian students, they all seem to have the same name, Abdul Hussein Hasa and so on. At the beginning of the 90s we had 3,000 foreign students at Dentistry. But, if I look at the face, it seems rather familiar. I also remember he used to be a good student. You should go and look in the register in order to see the names of his former Romanian colleagues", the Dean of the Dentistry Faculty, professor Lain Serbanescu, advised us.


Mrs. P, from the Dean’s Office, says that when Ceausescu was still the leader of the country, there were 25 students each year at Dentistry, and the rest until 100, were foreigners: a lot of Greeks, a lot of youngsters from the Middle and Near East - Iran, Syria, Iraq, Israel - as well as from Germany and Norway or Africa.

"You should know there aren’t too many colleagues left. The foreigners went back to their countries and it looks like the Romanian students also left the country", the secretary says. She has also explained that the foreign students weren’t allowed to go for the residential course, but only for the specialization, but these two, Nazmi and Zidan, the secretary says, didn’t go for the specialization either. "I believe that Zidan came to us as a result of a transfer, but I can’t tell you where from", the secretary says.


"Nazmi!!! Yes, yes, yes. Yes, we were colleagues. But we didn’t talk so much with them, especially if we take into account the fact that the Security was a major factor before 1990. However, he seemed a totally normal person, even one cannot tell people’s minds. Is he arrested? Trialled? The poor guy…" Our interviewee says that, last year, the ten-years-after-graduation meeting took place, but Nazmi didn’t show up. Only two Israeli colleagues, who are Christian Arabians, came.

N. C. remembers that they also had another colleague, whose name would be pronounced Ganaem. "I don’t how to spell it, but the guy was very passionate when talking about the cause of the Palestinians. Of course, he was a Palestinian", the dentist says.


He says that the foreign students were accommodated at that time in the 11 and 13 hostels, which were considered to be luxurious, and the Romanian used to go to parties there and this is when they socialized. "Yes, they also used to take us out to a restaurant from time to time. Generally, they had good families. However, we didn’t know so many things about them. We used to talk about normal things, school and girls. I have never seen Nazmi in a situation that I thought of as strange and I didn’t hear anything like this about him either:, the doctor adds.

Another colleague of Nazmi’s, dentist in Dej, also says that the Palestinian was known as a good student, and he was even at the top of the form for the foreigners, because he had good grades. (Elena Stanciu)

Translation by Sorin Balan
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