KGB document claims Mahmoud Abbas was an agent in Damascus

A KGB document that was revealed by Israel’s Channel 1 claims that in 1983, the Palestinian Authority President was an agent in Damascus. Senior level PA officials rejected the claims and accused Israel of attempting to damage the President’s image.
Mahmoud Abbas Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

According to a document that was released this evening (Wednesday) by Israel’s Channel 1, PA President Mahmoud Abbas was an undercover Soviet agent in Syria more than 30 years ago. The story was reported by Channel 1’s foreign news desk editor Oren Nahari.

According to the report, the details were revealed in documents that KGB defector Vasili Mitrokhin brought with him to the West. Among the documents was a list from 1938 that included the names of Palestinian sources and agents in Damascus.

Photo Credit: The Mitrokhin Archives/Channel 2 News

In the list, it is clearly listed that Mahmoud Abbas, whose code name was Krotov (mole), was a KGB agent in Syria. Mitrokhin’s archives were made available to researchers recently and the list found its way to the Hebrew University’s Truman Institute researchers Isabella Ginor and Gideon Remez.

It is unclear whether Abbas was an agent before or after 1983. In the document, the code name Krotov is listed as “Mahmoud Abbas, born in 1935 of Palestinian origin.”

The PA responded to the report by rejecting the claims. Senior level PA officials asserted that this was a joke and an Israeli attempt to damage Abbas’ name in light of the political deadlock.

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