Abu Omar may not have been the only Egyptian militant kidnapped by the CIA in Italy. Seven months after Omar’s disappearance, Mohammed Morgan was kidnapped with the same technique in the town of Vigevano, near Milan, according to l’Unità last Saturday. Both Abu Omar and Morgan were friends and members of the same subversive Egyptian organization, Hizb al Tahrir.
In an exclusive service signed by the investigative reporter, Andrea Purgatorio, published secret documents cast a new light on aspects of both cases. One of the documents sent to the Minister of Interior on October 30th, 2003, and signed by the director of SISDE, Mario Mori, relates the dynamics of the kidnapping and the imprisonment of Morgan on his arrival in Egypt. The SISDE is the agency for internal security and intelligence.
Further documents reveal that Abu Omar was under close surveillance by the DIGOS, the national investigative police, who shared their intelligence both with their English colleagues and the FBI. It now appears that the FBI agents were actually undercover CIA agents who used Italian intelligence in planning the Abu Omar kidnapping.
On February 21st, four days after the kidnapping, SISMi (the Italian intelligence agency) notified all competent government agencies of the disappearance. On March 10th SISMi informed authorities that Abu Omar was in the hands of the Egyptians after a combined operation with the Americans.
On March 14 the Egyptian Intelligence Agency, LOT, in an apparent attempt to mislead the Italian agency, requested information on the disappearance of the imam.
During the Milan criminal investigation Italian authorities requested information on Abu Omar’s whereabouts from the US. In what could be construed as “obstruction of justice” the Americans replied that to their knowledge Abu Omar had returned to Albania.
In September, just before the alleged abduction of Morgan, the SISMi discovered in Tirana (Albania) that the CIA had ordered the Albanian intelligence services, ShIK, to break into the home of Marsela Glina, Abu Omar’s wife. According to the SISMi communiqué of September 7th, 2003, the CIA forbid the ShIK to share any information concerning their Abu Omar operations with their Italian colleagues. The note concludes that the CIA had reorganized the ShIK, built their new general quarters, and stimulated collaboration with the CIA through a monthly compensation of three to four hundred dollars per agent. A conclusion that leaves little doubt about the allegiance of the Albanian services.
The Italians are all too aware of double allegiances. After the Second World War, the OSS, followed by the CIA, were instrumental in creating the Italian Secret Services, the SID and the Sifar (now SISMi and SISDE). Both organizations were heavily conditioned for decades by American interference.
The Unità article (not available on line) was published before the Chicago Tribune scoop that alleges that Abu Omar had been an informant for the ShIK.
Abu Omar may have collaborated with the ShIK. According to reliable sources, Gilles Keppel wrote in his recent book “Fitna” that Al Zawahiri, the mentor of Bin Laden and co-founder of Al Qaeda, also supplied information to the Egyptian Services in order to barter his freedom. Al Zawahiri had been imprisoned and sentenced to life for his role in the assassination of Sadat.