The United States declined a request from the United Arab Emirates to assist an investigation into the assassination of a top Hamas commander.
Dubai suspects Israel's Mossad agency to have been behind the murder of Mahmoud al-Mabhoh in a Dubai hotel in January 2010. Israel has neither confirmed nor denied a role in the killing.
The U.S. last year denied reports that it had received a request for assistance from Dubai, but a recently released WikiLeaks cable proves otherwise.
A cable sent from the embassy in Dubai less than a month after the assassination reveals that senior U.A.E. officials asked the American ambassador and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to probe urgently "cardholder details and related information for credit cards reportedly issued by a U.S. bank to several suspects" in the murder.
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The WikiLeaks cable not only proved that the request was indeed made but that it was recorded in a secret State Department cable. By not accepting the request, the Obama administration harmed the Dubai investigation efforts and assisted Israel instead.
The credit card details uncovered by the Dubai police were linked to suspects using forged identity papers - none of their real identities has yet been revealed. The Dubai investigation has apparently gotten no closer to decoding the mystery of whether the Mossad was indeed behind the assassination.
According to Dubai authorities, the team that tracked and killed Mabhouh used fraudulent British, Irish, French, German and Australian passports to enter and depart from Dubai. More than half of the people identified as responsible for the killing share the names of foreign-born Israeli nationals.