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Palestinian ambassador's daughter claims he was 'assassinated'

Jan. 2, 2014 10:47 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 5, 2014 10:12 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The daughter of the Palestinian ambassador to Czech Republic who died in Prague Wednesday said an explosive device in his house was planted to assassinate him.

"The information about a safety device detonating in his safe is untrue," Jamal al-Jamal's daughter told Ma'an.

"The safe has been used daily for 30 years in the headquarters of the Palestinian embassy. It is old, not modern, and has no (hi-tech) devices," Rana al-Jamal said.

She added that her father had used the safe without being harmed before heading to Egypt two months ago, a period in which the safe was used by other employees in the embassy.

"When my father returned a few days ago to the Czech embassy, the safe was moved by a Czech moving company to his house the night before the explosion" al-Jamal said. "A replacement safe was put in the embassy and the old one which was the size of a mini-fridge was taken to the ambassador's house."

She said the explosion did not come from inside the safe, but from underneath it, insisting that the incident was not an accident, but that her father was "assassinated."

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki earlier described the blast as "a work accident."

"The safe was old, and it was made in a way that if it is being opened in a wrong way, an explosive device attached to its door would explode, and this is what happened," al-Malki said.

Police in Prague said the explosion appeared to be accidental rather than a terror attack.

"The blast was the result of inexpert handling of an explosive," Prague police chief Martin Vondrasek told public radio.

Czech police also said Thursday that they had found unregistered weapons in al-Jamal's Prague home.

AFP contributed to this report.
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