Former Mossad chief decided it was time to quit when good friend Rabin was shot dead

SHABTAI Shavitís voice breaks a little when our conversation turns to Yitzhak Rabinís assassination.

The murder of Israelís prime minister ó in November, 1995 ó still remains an emotive subject for Shabtai, the former Mossad director general who led the intelligence agency from 1989 until 1996.

He and Rabin were good friends and their families were close, too.

In fact, it was within minutes of learning about his friendís death that he decided it was time to quit his position.

Shabtai is speaking to me from his home in Ramat Hasharon ahead of publication of his book Head of the Mossad: In Pursuit of a Safe and Secure Israel (Notre Dame Press).

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