Senior Islamic Jihad leader Khaled al-Batash accused Israel’s Mossad of being responsible for the assassination of a Palestinian engineer said to have ties to Hamas, in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur
“We, as a family, accuse the Mossad of being behind the assassination of Dr. Fadi Mohammad al-Batsh, a researcher in energy sciences,” Senior Islamic Jihad leader Khaled al-Batas said in an interview with Al Mayadeen.
In the interview, Khaled al-Batash called on the Malaysian Authorities to conduct a “comprehensive and rapid investigation” into the killing before the assassins escaped.
Fadi al-Batash, 35, was ambushed upon leaving the mosque early Saturday morning and targeted by attackers riding on a motorcycle, i24 news reported. A Malaysian police chief, cited by Palestinian media, said that the two assassins shot between 10 and 20 bullets towards Fadi and then shortly after fled the scene.
Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has dismissed claims made by Islamic Jihad. “There’s a tradition among terror organizations of blaming Israel for every instance of settling of accounts… The man was no saint and settling accounts among terror groups and different factions is something we see all the time,” he said. “I assume this was the case here too”, Lieberman said on Israeli public radio.
Hamas, claimed the engineer was tied to their terrorist organization in a press release on the assassination. “The Islamic Resistance Movement, mourns the son of its sons, the righteous, and a knight of its knights, a scholar of young Palestine scholars and the guardian of the Book of Allah, the son of Jabalia the Mujahideen. The martyr was distinguished by his excellence and scientific creativity. He has important contributions to international conferences in the field of energy. The martyr was an example in calling God and working for the Palestinian cause”, the press release stated.
This was a targeted killing and not a terrorist attack because there were other people at the scene, but the assassins focused only on Batash” a Malaysian police chief said according to the Jerusalem Post. “We’re not ruling out any line of inquiry, including the possibility that elements identified with ISIS are behind the assassinations”, the officer concluded.
Malaysian Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was quoted by the state-run news agency as saying Al-Batsh was “an electrical engineer and an expert at making rockets.” Hamidi also said authorities were investigating all angles into his death and had ordered the police to cooperate with Interpol and other and other related agencies, Jerusalem Post reported.
By R Kotkin