Abou Zayed is wanted for his alleged role as one of the gunmen in a bloody 1982 attack on a Jewish restaurant in Paris.
By Paul Shindman, World Israel News
Norway authorized the extradition of one of the alleged perpetrators of the 1982 terror attack on a Jewish restaurant in Paris that left six dead and 22 injured, Le Monde reported.
This decision by the Norwegian government is not subject to appeal and must be executed within ten days, the report said.
Walid Abdulrahman Abou Zayed is wanted by French justice for his alleged involvement in an attack carried out by the Abu Nidal terror group, which split off from Yasser Arafat’s Fatah faction in the 1970s.
Abou Zayed fled to Norway, which granted him citizenship in 1991.
French justice officials suspect him of being “one of the shooters” in the 1982 Paris attack, in which terrorists tossed grenades into the Jo Goldenberg restaurant and opened fire on those inside.
Two other assailants were identified in the past few years by other former members of the Abu Nidal group who were granted immunity by French officials.
Norway had blocked Abou Zayed’s extradition for several years despite French demands, citing a refusal to deport its nationals, but was forced to do so following a judicial agreement with the European Union last year, the Le Monde report said.
The extradition has to be carried out within ten days, although Abou Zayed’s lawyer said he has appealed the extradition order.
The decision taken by the Norwegian government is a beacon of hope for the families of the victims, who have been waiting for almost 40 years for any of the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
“The trial will finally be able to take place, with a defendant in the box”, lawyer Avi Bitton, who is representing three former employees of Jo Goldenberg, told Le Monde.
“It took years of fighting, media exposure and activism by lawyers for this trial to take place,” Bitton said.
French justice officials have issued three other international arrest warrants targeting two individuals located in Jordan and a third in the Palestinian Authority, all suspected of having been involved in the preparation or commission of the attack. Jordan has repeatedly refused to extradite the two suspects, including the suspected mastermind of the bombing.
Controversy also surrounds the expected trial over revelations last year that French authorities made a secret pact with the Abu Nidal terrorists that granted them free movement in France in exchange for a promise of no further attacks on French soil.