Hamas threatened to strike at Israeli targets overseas in response to Israel’s alleged role in the killing of a Palestinian professor and engineer over the weekend who was affiliated with the terrorist organization.
“Israel has an ‘open account’ with the Palestinian people and has now taken the war between the sides overseas,” said head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh on Saturday.
The professor, 35-year-old Fadi Mohammad al-Batsh was killed in a drive-by shooting on Saturday, in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur. According to local officials, al-Batsh at the time was walking to a local mosque for prayers at dawn when two gunmen on a motorcycle shot him.
Hamas, which also referred to al-Batsh as a “martyr” who worked for the Palestinian cause, had blamed the Mossad, Israel’s overseas intelligence agency.
“We blame the Israeli Mossad of carrying out the assassination of Dr Fadi al-Batsh,” Haniyeh had said.
Al-Batsh’ family made a similar statement saying, “we accuse the Mossad of being behind the assassination.”
According to Malaysian Home Minister, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, al-Batsh was “an electrical engineer and an expert at making rockets.” Israeli media outlets also described him as an expert on drone technology.
Israel’s Channel 10 reported that if the Mossad had any role in the killing, it was to prevent advanced weaponry and technology from being shipped to Gaza from overseas. However, the Mossad and Israel’s political echelon have remained mum on Israel’s alleged role in the killing of al-Batsh.
Israeli Intelligence Minister, Yisrael Katz fired back at Haniyeh’s threats against Israel.
“Gaza is much closer than Malaysia,” he said. (An attack against Israel) would cross a red line and would lead Israel to renew a policy of targeted assassinations of senior Hamas officials in Gaza, and Haniyeh could be one of them.”