The lawsuit was filed in 2000, demanding compensation for bodily injuries caused by the hijacking of the cruise ship “Achille Lauro” by terrorists. In an act of “malicious terrorism, offensive and particularly outrageous “
The Jerusalem District Court ruled compensation in the amount of NIS 400,000 in favor of each of the families of two women who were abducted on the “Achille LAuro” ship in 1985, N12 news learned today (Sunday). The two have been dead since the abduction, but their families have continued to claim that the abduction caused them much damage, which accompanied them until their last days. Along with the compensation, Judge Miriam Ilani ruled that the PLO will pay tens of thousands of shekels for lawyers’ fees and legal expenses, so that in total it is almost a million shekels that the PLO will have to pay in the coming month.
The “Shurat HaDin” organization, which has represented the families for about two decades, explains that this is a historic verdict, not only because 35 years have passed since the abduction, but also because of the principled ruling that the PLO is responsible for a terrorist incident issued by the “Front for the Liberation of Palestine”. Hundreds of thousands of shekels for each family.
The ruling regarding the PLO’s responsibility for the abduction:
“The front for the liberation of Palestine, which is undisputed for carrying out the abduction, was an integral part of the PLO and should be seen, and its leader actually acted as PLO organs whose actions are the PLO’s.”
It was also written that the hijacking of the ship was a malicious, offensive and particularly outrageous terrorist incident. “It is not just a matter of false imprisonment or false arrest, which mainly causes loss of choice, shame and a sense of helplessness.”
The Italian cruise ship was hijacked in 1985 by four terrorists, members of the Front for the Liberation of Palestine. The hijackers changed the route of the ship from Port Said in Egypt to the port of Tartus in Syria. They demanded in exchange for the release of the hostages that 50 Palestinian prisoners who were detained in Israel at the time be released. During the abduction, an American Jew, the late Leon Klighoffer, was shot in the head and thrown into the sea. After negotiations with the kidnappers, they were persuaded to abandon the ship and the hostages were released.
The president of the “Shurat HaDin” organization, Adv. Nitzana Darshan-Leitner, said: “This is a precedent-setting ruling of historical significance, which reveals the truth behind the hijacking of the ship, a terrorist attack that shocked the whole world. After decades in which the PLO shunned all responsibility for the attack and tried to impose it on the “National Front for the Liberation of Palestine”, and after Arafat vehemently denied in real time his ties with Abu Abbas, the mastermind of the attack, the Israeli court ruled unequivocally that the PLO was behind Carrying out the attack on the National Front for the Liberation of Palestine. The PLO escaped trial in Italy but was finally captured in Israel. For two decades we have accompanied the Cheser and Schneider families, rejoicing that historical justice will eventually be done. Every terrorist organization will know that no terrorist is immune from the long arm of the law and historical truth will come eventually.”
By Yuval Harel (Hebrew), July 25, 2021, published on N12