February 25, 2010.
Israel's ambassador to Australia Yuval Rotem was summoned to Parliament House in Canberra today for a brief meeting with Mr Smith.
Australia's Foreign Minister Stephen Smith has warned Israel that its relationship with Australia could be damaged if evidence is found it was involved in forging Australian passports.
On Wednesday, the police added 15 more names to the hit squad, including three people holding Australian passports in the names of Bruce Joshua Daniel, Nicole Sandra McCabe and Adam Korman.
Australia' Foreign Minister Stephen Smith told parliament today the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Australian Passport Office and spy agency ASIO were investigating the possible fraudulent use of the passports.
The 15 new additions to the list are suspected of using bogus passports and stolen identities, just like the previous cast of killers - 10 men and a woman travelling on false British, Irish, French and German passports.
Smith said preliminary analysis by the AFP indicated the Australian passports appeared to have been duplicated or altered.
An Australian Federal Police (AFP) investigation has begun after Dubai authorities revealed that three suspects thought to be involved in the assassination of Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh travelled to the emirate on Australian passports.
Dubai police say the killing was almost certainly an Israeli hit and three suspected members of the assassination squad were travelling on Australian passports under the names of Adam Marcus Korman, Joshua Daniel Bruce and Nicole Sandra McCabe.
This morning Mr Smith told Parliament that preliminary investigations suggested the three Australians, who all live in Israel, were the victims of identity fraud.
Mr Smith called in the Israeli ambassador, Yuval Rotem, in Canberra this morning and demanded "full and transparent cooperation" from Israeli authorities.
"I've made it crystal clear to the ambassador that if the results of that investigation cause us to come to the conclusion that the abuse of Australian passports was in any way sponsored or condoned by Israeli officials, then Australia would not regard that as the act of a friend," Mr Smith said.
Mr Smith also told Mr Rotem that the Australian Government expects full cooperation from Israeli officials.
"I also indicated to him that if we didn't receive that cooperation then we would potentially draw adverse conclusions from that," he said.
Mr Smith said he expected a response from Israel but did not know when that might be.
"The ambassador undertook to relay my message to Tel Aviv," he said.
He would not confirm whether Australian officials would be going to Israel as part of the investigation, saying that was an operational matter for the AFP.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has vowed the Government will "get to the bottom" of the case.
"If Australian passports are being used or forged by any state, let alone for the purpose of assassination, this is of the deepest concern and we are getting to the bottom of this now," he said.
Australian passport officials have been in touch with the three Australians.
Their passports were all issued in 2003.
Mr Smith said while he was concerned for their welfare, he did not believe there would be any long-term repercussions on their ability to travel.
Mr Korman reportedly told Israeli media he was "shocked and frightened" to discover his name had been implicated in the killing.
Dubai police have now named a total of 26 suspects in the killing and have released more information about their movements at the time of the assassination.
All had apparently travelled to Dubai from one of six European cities or Hong Kong.
Each then left the country to various destinations, including Hong Kong and Iran, before returning to Europe.
Police also released new vision from the hotel's security cameras showing the man named as Mr Bruce with one of the French suspects inside the hotel.
Israel's foreign minister has previously said that there was "no evidence" to link his country to the killing.