Three powerful time-bombs exploded in quick succession late yesterday afternoon inside the Palestine Broadcasting Studios in Queen Melisande's Way, Jerusalem, injuring three members of the staff, two of them seriously, and doing considerable damage to the interior of the control-room and a studio.
Mrs Mae Weissenberg, organizer of the English Children's hour and an English announcer, was seriously injured. But her condition after an operation at Government Hospital yesterday evening was stated to be not dangerous. Mr. Adeeb Mansour, one of the control-room engineers, was very severely injured and had to have both legs amputated.
Another member of the control room staff, Mr. Gabriel Dimitropoulos, received slight injuries and was able to return to his home.
The broadcasting programmes were interrupted and the station was off the air for some time.
BOMB UNDER DESK
The first of the explosions occured at about 5.20 during a broadcast, under Mrs. Weissenberg's direction, of a request programme in the last ten minutes of the English Children's Hour. The bomb had apparently been deposited under the microphone desk-stand in a small control-studio from which Mrs. Weissenberg was playing the records on the turn-table.
She was hurled from the chair, and members of the staff who rushed in to the room found her lying on the floor. As she was taken out, a second bomb exploded in the main hall, causing considerable damage.
Mrs. Weinberg was removed to a next-door house and cared for until the arrival of an ambulance from Government Hospital. As she was placed in the ambulance, a third explosion occurred in the technical control-room, severely injuring Mr. Adib Mansour, one of the engineers, who was immediately removed to Government Hospital.
One member of staff is stated to have seen smoke before the bomb exploded.
The police guard, British constables and Jewish supernumeraries, immediately closed the building, and investigations were opened by the police from Meah Shearim police-station and the CID to determine how the bombs were smuggled into the building.
The explosions did considerable damage, the full extent of which has not yet been assessed, although it is known that the studios will have to be closed for some time. A substitute programme of records was yesterday transmitted from Ramallah, and the usual English, Hebrew and Arabic news broadcasts were given, the announcers being conveyed from Jerusalem under escort.
At the time of the explosions, other clerks and employees were in adjoining buildings used as offices. There were no English children performing in the Children's Hour as is customary . Listeners to the request programme stated that they heard a loud report at 5.20 and then silence.
The fine new premises of Broadcasting House, situated in a building owned by the Ethiopian Community, were completed for the use of the PBS only a few weeks ago when the former studios in the Waqf building in the Mamillah Road were vacated.
The control-room, recording rooms and engineering offices are conveniently situated together on the first floor above the main entrance-hall.
Mrs. Weissenberg came to Palestine about five years ago from Johannesburg, in South Africa, where she was born. She was married about three years ago to a German-Jewish lawyer, Dr. Julian Weissenberg, and has been with the PBS for two years.