A magistrate saw the two Arabs accused of manslaughter following the bomb incident on the Israeli airline offices in Athens in which several people were injured, and a young Greek boy died.
ATHENS, UNIVERSITY STREET WITH TRAFFIC; PUBLIC PROSECUTOR'S BUILDING; TERRORISTS LEAVING IN HANDCUFFS, SURROUNDED BY SECURITY POLICE; CROWD OUTSIDE COURT.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A magistrate saw the two Arabs accused of manslaughter following the bomb incident on the Israeli airline offices in Athens in which several people were injured, and a young Greek boy died.
Police enforced strict security precautions when the two Arabs, 23-year-old - Elias Dergarabedian, tailor, and 21-year-old student, Mansour Murad, appeared before an examining magistrate. The magistrate gave them 24 hours to prepare their defence.
The Arabs are said to have admitted to the police earlier they were members of a Jordanian Commando organisation.
The hearing was held behind closed doors. The Arabs are being defended by Greek lawyers, Tassos Panagopoulos and Stelios Ionnides, appointed by the United Arab Republic embassy.
According to court sources, Mr. Panagopoulos said Murad would plead not guilty to the charges of manslaughter, which could carry the death penalty - attempted manslaughter, illegal possession of explosives and damaging foreign property.
The lawyer said Murad would maintain that he had nothing to do with the explosion, and simply accompanied Derbarabedian in Athens to show him the El Al airline offices.
Murad will admit he is a member of an organisation set up to commit acts of sabotage, but he is not a commando, Mr. Panagopoulos said.
"Derbarabedian will admit he threw the explosive device, not to kill or injure people, but to harm Israel", Mr. Panagopoulos continued. "He will reaffirm that his mission was to fight Israel, and that is a sacred duty to him."
Legal experts said that, as is usual in such cases, the magistrate will hear statements by the accused and call witnesses for both sides before submitting his findings to the public prosecutor.
A counsil of magistrates will then decide whether there is a case to answer.