In brave operation, the Mossad brings home wristwatch of legendary spy Eli Cohen

The Mossad says it regained the wristwatch of Eli Cohen, a legendary Israeli spy who was executed in Syria in 1965.

Eli Cohen is known as one of Israel’s greatest spies. In the yearly memorial service held in his honor several weeks ago, Mossad director Yosi Cohen presented the watch to Eli Cohen’s family.

The watch had been held by Syria after Cohen was executed.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the Mossad for “the determined and courageous operation, the sole objective of which was to return to Israel a memento from a great fighter who greatly contributed to the security of the state.”

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His widow, Nadia Cohen, told Israeli media that the watch was bought, but she did not know where, the “Mossad spoke to us a couple of months ago when the watch was up for sale.”

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She said that she was pleased to have it, “I felt it was part of his body, his blood is on that watch.”

Eli Cohen’s daughter told Israeli radio that “this is very exciting, it’s the first and only thing we have from dad.”

She said photos and DNA analysis were used to confirm the wristwatch indeed belonged to her father.

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Asked where the watch came from, Cohen’s daughter said that the watch “was in an enemy country, probably Syria. It was bought on the internet.”

The Prime Minister’s Office refused to comment on where the watch was purchased.

Nadia Cohen added: “The watch has been in Israel for a number of months. This is exciting news God willing one day his body will be returned too.”