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Australia admits it knew of 'Prisoner X' in detention

Foreign Minister Bob Carr admitted Thursday Canberra knew an Australian had been detained by Tel Aviv in 2010 for national security offences, as media suggested he may have been held for treason. Carr's revelation, following an earlier statement that he only became aware of the man's incarceration after his death, came after Israel confirmed it imprisoned a foreigner in solitary confinement on security grounds that year.

Australia spy case mystery grips Israel

Speculation over the top-secret arrest and suicide of an Australian-Israeli in prison reached fever pitch Thursday amid allegations he may have been about to blow the whistle on sensitive Mossad operations. The mystery surrounding the so-called Prisoner X, identified this week by Australian media as Mossad agent Ben Zygier, has dominated headlines in Israel and Australia despite a media blackout on publishing details about his arrest.

Spy suicide scandal focuses attention on Israel's foreign Jews

* Australian immigrant may have betrayed Mossad secrets * Dual-identity missions seen risking allies, anti-Semitism By Dan Williams JERUSALEM, Feb 14 (Reuters) - The jailhouse suicide of an Australian immigrant who may have betrayed Israel's Mossad has focused attention on the agency's recruitment of foreign-born Jews who could spy under cover of their native passports.

Reuters World News Highlights at 1000 GMT, Feb 14

Feb 14 (Reuters) - TOP STORIES ----------- JOHANNESBURG - South African Olympic and Paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius, known as the "Blade Runner" for his racing prosthetics, was arrested on Thursday after his girlfriend was shot dead at his home in Pretoria. - - - -

UPDATE 3-Israeli lawyer sheds some light on Australian spy mystery

* Lawyer met "Prisoner X" a day before jailhouse death * Attorney appears to confirm Australian man's Mossad link * Israeli media still largely muzzled over case (Adds lawyer on contact with Mossad liaison about "Prisoner X") By Maayan Lubell and Rob Taylor

UPDATE 1-Israel publishes some details as Australian spy mystery deepens

* Court stops short of confirming suicide was a Mossad spy * Australia government says knew of case for two years * Israelis chafe at censorship on story available over Web * Media reports say several Australian-Israelis under spy investigation (Adds Australian government comments, quote from friend, background paragraphs 2, 6-7, 10-11, 15, 21-22) By Dan Williams and Rob Taylor

Israel publishes some details in Australian spy mystery

* Court stops short of confirming suicide was a Mossad spy * Israelis chafe at censorship on story available over Web By Dan Williams JERUSALEM, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Israel broke its official silence on Wednesday over the reported suicide in jail of an Australian immigrant recruited to its spy service Mossad, giving limited details on a closely guarded case.

Israel struggles to keep cloak of secrecy over spy story

* Australian man's death in Israel tests censorship limits * Military censorship faces new challenge in Internet age * Security-related issues subject to censor's review By Jeffrey Heller JERUSALEM, Feb 13 (Reuters) - The mysterious death of an Australian prisoner in Israel has put the spotlight on a military-run censorship system that is finding it harder to black out secret information often only a mouse click away on the Internet.

UPDATE 2-Israel rattled by mysterious Australian prisoner-ABC

(Adds Australian government comment, former intelligence officer, paragraphs 12-16, 22-24) LONDON, Feb 12 (Reuters) - An Australian man committed suicide in a high-security Israeli jail in 2010 after being held for months in great secrecy, Australia's ABC channel said on Tuesday, throwing new light on a case that has rattled Israel.

Israel censor eases some restrictions over 'Prisoner X'

The Israeli censor on Wednesday slightly eased tight restrictions on the death of "Prisoner X", allowing the press to publish excerpts of an ABC report which said he was an Australian with ties to Mossad. The story of the so-called Prisoner X first emerged in May 2010 when Israel's Ynet news website briefly ran a story about a prisoner being held in top secret conditions whose identity and crime was not even known to his jailers.
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