'Germany met with Munich terrorists after attack'
BERLIN - Germany initiated clandestine meetings with Black September immediately after the terrorist group murdered 11 Israeli athletes and a German police officer at the 1972 Olympic Games, according to German magazine Der Spiegel.
In its Sunday issue, Spiegel reported that the talks were initiated at the behest of the West German government, located at the time in Bonn, for fear that Black September would commit additional acts of terror on German soil.
According to the report, just several months after the murders, the government proposed a secret meeting between a Black September official and then-German foreign minister Walter Scheel, the aim of the which was to create a "new basis of trust."
Germany's government demanded a quid pro quo: the PLO would cease terror attacks on German soil in exchange for a political upgrade of the PLO. In addition, the German government would pull the plug on any criminal charges for the murders in Munich.
Paul Frank, the state secretary in the German Foreign Ministry, sent a signal to the PLO that "Munich chapter" is now "closed," wrote Spiegel.
The magazine reported that when the French police arrested Oudeh Abu Daoud, one of the main organizers of the Munich killing spree, and inquired about extraditing him to the German authorities, the Bavarian justice secretary Alfred Seidl (Christian Social Union party) recommended that Germany take no action. The French released Abu Daoud, and Syria's Assad regime protected him until his death at a Damascus hospital in 2010.