Adnan Awad

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Adnan Awad
Born 1942
Parent(s) Widad

Adnan Awad (born 1942 in Palestine) was a Captain in the Palestinian Liberation Army who joined the 15 May Organization and prepared to bomb the Noga Hilton hotel in Geneva, Switzerland on August 31, 1982, but instead fled the scene and later turned himself into the American embassy and claimed he wanted to renounce any terrorist connections.[1]

Early life[edit]

Born to a shopkeeper and his wife Widad in Ijzim, Adnan had an older sister. The family moved to Kiswe, Syria and Awad attended Alliance High School in Damascus.[1]

The August 1982 bombing attempt[edit]

On August 11, 1982, Mohammed Rashid unsuccessfully tried to bomb Pan Am Flight 830 en route to Honolulu. Twenty days later, Awad turned himself over to the American Embassy in Saudi Arabia and claimed that he had been pressured into joining the group.


He was turned over to the Swiss, but later returned to the United States to help secure indictment against the 15 May leadership. With his aid, American intelligence agencies determined that it was the 15 May Organization that had constructed the bomb aboard Pan Am Flight 830.[2]

In 1991 he co-operated with author Steven Emerson, who wrote about Awad's life in the book "Terrorist".[1]


  1. ^ a b c Emerson, Steven A. & Cristina del Sesto. "Terrorist: The Inside Story of the Highest-Ranking Iraqi Terrorist Ever to Defect to the West", 1991
  2. ^ Michelle Visser, Sovereign Immunity and Informant Defectors: The United States' Refusal to Protect its Protectors, 58 Stan. L. Rev. 663 (2005)