The conditions in which Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, called “Carlos”, was transferred to France on August 1994, to be judged, are more and more mysterious. At the time, it had been known that the French Interior Minister, Charles Pasqua, had negotiated this arrest with his friend, the Sudanese islamic leader Hassan al-Tourabi, and that the operation had been directed by the prefect Philippe Parent.
Carlos was a revolutionist militant who had formed a combatants’ secret organization whose activities were mainly at the service of the Palestinian cause. He had become, in the seventies, the wanted number one in the world, and personified a violent form of transnational resistance to the Zionism and to the American imperialism.
The French writer François-Xavier Verschave had affirmed that in exchange of the handing over of Carlos, France had provided assistance to Hassan al-Tourabi, particularly in the form of satellite photos helping him reinforce his military position. He had been found guilty of slandering for this assertion.
In an interview with le Figaro, on January 10, 2006, the General Philippe Rondot (the name of which was linked to the Clearstream scandal thereafter) praised to have directed himself the capture operation. Which pushed Carlos, on June 2006, to register a complaint against him for kidnapping.
However, the core of the problem is to know if Carlos was extradited by the Sudanese authorities or if he was kidnapped by the French agents. In the second case, his presence on the French territory would be illegal, his sentencing should be cancelled and he should be extradited towards his country of origin, Venezuela.
Precisely, the president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez Frias, took advantage of the last OPEC summet in Caracas to sing the “friend” Carlos’ praises, in his speech. Indeed, within the OPEC, Venezuela and Iran laud today the affectation of the oil royalties to the liberation of the people and the economic development of the Third World like formerly Algeria, Iraq, Kuwait and Libya, who had supported secretly the hostage taking of the OPEC Ministers by Carlos.
However, in an interview with the Turkish newspaper Vakit on July 3, 2006, Hassan al-Tourabi – contradicting former declarations- affirmed having never handed over Carlos to the French autorities. It is, thus, not with him that the capture would have been negotiated, and it would have been, indeed, a question of abduction.
The question then is: who sold Carlos? Specially that, at the time, the single person that was able to win his trust in Khartoum, to work, in bond, with the American and the French intelligence services, and to make him fall into a trap was but.. Osama Bin Laden, in which Carlos was still retaining his confidence when he wrote, in prison, his book, revolutionary Islam. (Courtesy Reseau Voltaire)