ADL Urges Italian Government to Uphold Terroristís 25-Year Sentence
New York, NY, August 3, 2000 Ö The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today
called on the Italian government to uphold the prison sentence of a Palestinian
terrorist convicted in the Achille Lauro hijacking. Ibrahim Fatayer
Abdelatif is seeking a pardon on the remainder of his 25-year sentence for his
role in the attack on the Italian cruise ship in which an elderly American, Leon
Klinghoffer, was brutally executed and thrown overboard in his wheelchair.
"We respectfully call on the government of Italy to ensure that Mr.
Abdelatif, a convicted terrorist, serve out his entire sentence and be treated
with the full force of the law," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National
Director. "Unfortunately, Italy has shown lax treatment toward some of Mr.
Abdelatifís counterparts involved in this heinous terrorist attack. To date,
Italy has shown no initiative in extraditing Abu Abbas, the mastermind of the
attack, who was found guilty in absentia by an Italian court."
In a letter to the Piero Fassino, Italian Minister of Justice, Mr. Foxman
urged the Italian government to uphold the original 25-year sentence. Two other
hijackers, Ahmad Marrouf al-Assadi and Bassam al-Asker, were granted parole in
1991. Mr. Abdelatif is the only perpetrator to remain in prison for his role in
the October 1985 hijacking.
The victimís daughters, Lisa and Ilsa Klinghoffer, have also written a
letter to Minister Fassino. "Please donít say that our fatherís murder
can be forgiven," the letter stated. "Donít let Abdelatif out of
prison before the end of his sentence."
The ADL Klinghoffer Foundation combats terrorism through educational,
political and legal means. In addition, the Foundation recognizes exemplary
action against terrorism with the Leon and Marilyn Klinghoffer Foundation
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.