BEIRUT, Lebanon, May 6 (UPI) -- Syria foiled an Israeli plot to kill Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal, who lives in Damascus, and arrested the cell that planned his slaying, reports said.
A Syrian source said the "security agencies aborted the attempt against Mashaal before it was carried out by a group of people who entered Syria with forged passports," according to Saudi daily al-Sharq al-Awsat, monitored in Beirut.
He said the gang was arrested a few days ago and an investigation indicated it was hired by the Israeli intelligence agency, the Mossad.
"The members who claimed to be Muslims and some of whom pretended to be Yemenis came to Syria to try to assassinate Mashaal," the source added.
Israel, which assassinated Hamas founder and spiritual guide Sheik Ahmed Yassin and the group's Gaza chief Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi within a span of one month, has vowed to kill all Hamas leaders including Mashaal.