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Murder at Mykonos: Anatomy of a Political Assassination

Annex B: Perpetrators

The Mykonos operation brought together experienced operators from the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and the Lebanese Shi’ite militia groups Hezbollah and Amal.147 The majority of the assembled team members were already resident in Germany, but several key roles were played by Iranian agents who traveled to Germany specifically for the operation.


Abdol-Rahman Banihashemi (aka Sharif)

Abdol-Rahman Banihashemi was an established agent of the IRI Ministry of Intelligence with experience in overseas operations. He worked directly under Fallahian and had previously been active for the Ministry of Intelligence in Lebanon and Switzerland.148 Banihashemi arrived in Berlin around September 7, 1992 to take command of the Mykonos operation.149 After the operation, he traveled back to Iran through Turkey. Once home he was reportedly rewarded with a Mercedes-Benz car by the IRI Ministry of Intelligence in recognition of his service to the state.150 He was also awarded shares in several companies belonging to the intelligence agency.151


Kazem Darabi

Kazem Darabi, who acted as the local facilitator for the Mykonos operation, has been identified as an active agent of the IRI Ministry of Intelligence152 and as a member of the Revolutionary Guards.153 Darabi was also a leading figure at Berlin’s Imam Jafar Sadeqh mosque. The German Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) believed the mosque to be strongly associated with Hezbollah sympathizers.154 Darabi is believed by the BfV to have served as the conduit between Hezbollah operatives in Berlin and the Islamic Republic of Iran.155

Darabi was born on March 22, 1959 in Kazeroon, Iran, and had resided in Germany since June 6, 1980.156 Darabi first attracted the notice of German security officials in April 1982, when authorities in Dortmund issued a warrant for his arrest157 because of his alleged role in an attack on Iranian students opposed to Ayatollah Khomeini who lived in the University of Mainz international student dormitory. The students were violently assaulted by a mob of eighty-six Khomeini sympathizers.158

[147]Known by the acronym "Amal", afwaj al-muqawamah al-lubnaniyyah (the Lebanese Resistance Detachments) is a Shiite militia and political movement that has operated in Lebanon since it was created in the mid-1970s by al-Sayyid Musa al-Sadr. Augustus Richard Norton, Hizballah: From Radicalism to Pragmatism?, 5 Middle East Pol’y Council J. 4, ¶ 8 (January 1998), at http://www.mepc.org/journal_vol5/9801_norton.asp.
[148]Mykonos Judgment, supra note 27, at 31.
[150]Witness statement of Abolghassem Mesbahi (witness C) on Sep. 26, 1996. SYSTEM-I JINAYATKAR:ASNAD-I DADGAH-I MIKUNUS [Criminal System: Documents of the Mykonos Case] 182 (Mihran Payandih et al. trans. 2000).
[151]Witness statement of Abolghassem Mesbahi (witness C) on Oct. 02, 1996. SYSTEM-I JINAYATKAR:ASNAD-I DADGAH-I MIKUNUS [Criminal System: Documents of the Mykonos Case] 205 (Mihran Payandih et al. trans. 2000)
[152]Grünewald Memo, supra note 32, at 1.
[153]Id. at 4.
[154]Mykonos Judgment, supra note 27, at 189.
[155]Grünewald Memo, supra note 32, at 5.
[156]Antrag auf Erteilung einer Aufenhaltserlaubnis [Application for a Residence Permit], Kazem Darabi, (Nov. 30, 1981) (on file with IHRDC).
[157]Haftbefehl: Gegen den Kazem Darabi [Arrest Warrant: for Kazem Darabi] (on file with IHRDC). See also DER FALL “MYKONOS” III: DOKUMENTATIONEN BEHAIMBERICHTE UND ZEITUNGSAUSCHNITTE ZUM STAATSTERRORISMUS IRAN’S [The Mykonos Case III: Documents, Intelligence Reports and Newspaper Clippings Regarding the State Terrorism of Iran] 20-24 (Komittee der Iranischen Opposition in Exil Gegen Terror [The Committee of the Iranian Opposition in Exile Against Terror] ed., date unavailable) (hereinafter Mykonos III) (on file with IHRDC).
[158]Entscheidung des 1. Kammer des Verwaltungsgerichts Mainz [Judgment of the 1st Administrative Court of Mainz], No. 603514, at 2-4, June 24, 1982. See also Mykonos III, supra note 157, at 44-46.

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Political Killings, Assassinations, Political Freedom