JERUSALEM, Israel - Dubai's police chief is certain the Mossad is behind the assassination of senior Hamas operative Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in a Dubai hotel on January 20.
The Mossad, Israel's Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations, provides strategic, political and operational intelligence for the Jewish state.
"Our investigations reveal that Mossad is involved in the murder of al-Mabhouh," Dubai Police Chief Dahi Khalfan Tamim told The National newspaper.
"It is 99 percent, if not 100 percent, that Mossad is standing behind the murder," Tamim said.
"Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, will be the first to be wanted for justice as he would have been the one who signed the decision to kill al-Mabhouh in Dubai," he said.
According to Tamim, an international crime has taken place against the United Arab Emirates and European and other Arab countries.
Dubai police are busy recreating the details of the operation, including retinal scans taken from video surveillance cameras of the 11 suspected "assassins" whose names and passport numbers were publicized on Tuesday.
Abd al-Bari Atwan, editor-in-chief of the London-based Arabic-language daily al-Quds al-Arabia, also said a "crime" had taken place.
"Israel violated the sovereignty of a number of countries, including the United Arab Emirates where the crime took place, as well as the sovereignty of Ireland, Britain and France, whose passports were used to commit the crime," Atwan wrote.
Israeli officials are taking the fallout in stride. It's not the first time Israel has been accused of covert operations involving wanted terrorists.
In February 2008, Hezbollah blamed Israel for the death of Imad Mughniyeh, head of the Lebanese-based terror group's military wing, who was killed when a car bomb exploded in an upscale neighborhood in Damascus. Hezbollah has been threatening to avenge his death ever since.
On Wednesday, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Army Radio that Dubai's release of passport information did not prove that the Mossad was behind the operation. "I don't know why we are assuming that Israel, or the Mossad, used those passports," Lieberman said.
Despite a lifetime of masterminding terror attacks, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, founder of Hamas' Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, has joined the ranks of shahids (martyrs).