JERUSALEM, March 1 (Xinhua) -- Several Australian police officers are slated to visit Israel soon in an investigation related to the recent assassination of a senior Hamas commander in Dubai, reported local daily Ha'aretz on Monday.
With consent from the Israeli side, two to three Australian investigators will arrive in the Jewish state in the coming days, where they are expected to question several dual nationals whose names have been connected to the January killing of Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in a hotel room in the Persian emirate, according to the report.
The visit comes as Dubai police have so far identified 27 suspects in the hit, who they said used 12 British, six Irish, four French, three Australian, one German and one unspecified European passports. The Dubai authorities have called upon all these nations to cooperate in the investigation.
The plot against al-Mabhouh, who police said was drugged and then suffocated, has put Israel at the eye of a whirlwind. Dubai police have said that they are virtually certain that the assassination was carried out by Israel's intelligence agency Mossad and that they believe that all suspects are now hiding in Israel to avoid arrest.
The Jewish state, while neither confirming nor denying the reports, has stressed that there is no hard evidence to prove Israel's role in the killing. In the past, Israel launched a number of so-called "targeted killings" against senior members of the Palestinian Hamas movement, which Israel blacklists as a terrorist group.
The Dubai hit has also caused Israel a handful of diplomatic troubles, as several countries whose passports were involved in the assassination have demanded Israel's explanation. Australian authorities last week said that Israel's statement was unsatisfactory.
In a similar move, British investigators travelled to Israel over the weekend to interview dual nationals whose names appeared on the British passports used by suspects in the Dubai killing.
Meanwhile, Dubai's police chief said on Monday that the United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is a member state, will exert extreme caution when dealing with visits by Israeli dual nationals, who were normally allowed to enter the country using their other passports.