4 Facts About The Palestinian Lecturer Who Was Shot Dead In KL

He was an expert at making rockets.

Cover image via Al Jazeera

On the morning of Saturday, a 35-year-old private university lecturer from Palestine was gunned down in front of Idaman Puteri condominium in Setapak by two motorcycle-borne assailants who were reportedly waiting for the lecturer for almost 20 minutes

The lecturer was identified as Dr Fadi Al Batsh, who did his doctorate in engineering at Universiti Malaya. Apart from being a lecturer at a private university, he was also the second Imam of Surau Medan Idaman.

Dr Fadi, who had been living in Malaysia for past 10 years, leaves behind his wife and three children, aged one, five and six.

According to KL police chief Mazlan Lazim, police believes the lecturer was the target because two other individuals walked by the place earlier unharmed.

"We will view the recordings of all the CCTV in the area to identify the suspects and get the registration number of the motorcycle," he said, adding that the assailants had arrived on a BMW GS dual purpose off-road/on-road motorcycle.

Police have started an investigation under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder.

File photo of the victim, Dr Fadi Al Batsh (extreme right), receiving an award from PM Najib Razak

Image via Al Jazeera

1. According to Deputy PM Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the lecturer was an electrical engineer who was "an expert at making rockets"

The lecturer, Dr Fadi, who was supposed to leave for Turkey Saturday afternoon to attend an international conference, had links with an intelligence organisation of a country and had been active in Islamic NGOs that championed the Palestinian cause, DPM Zahid Hamidi revealed while citing a preliminary investigation.

"The lecturer, a permanent resident of this country, is believed to have become a liability for a country hostile to Palestine," the Deputy PM was quoted as saying by MalayMail.

2. Hamas, the de facto governing authority of the Gaza Strip, said one of its members was "assassinated" in Malaysia. The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement, however, stopped short of directly accusing Mossad, Israel's secret service, of carrying out the killing.

Hamas described Dr Fadi as a "martyr" - a term the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement usually uses for people killed by Israeli forces, according to BBC.

"The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas mourns the death of the Palestinian scientist Fadi Al-Batsh, who was assassinated on his way to perform the dawn prayer in a mosque in Kuala Lumpur.

"He was known for his scientific innovation as he has attended many international conferences on energy in Japan, UK and Finland. He was planning to chair another conference on energy in Turkey," read the statement from Hamas.

The Star Online reported Hamas saying that Dr Fadi had contributed to the development of Malaysia's energy sector. He invented and developed several technical sets and minerals used in generating electricity, Hamas added.

Meanwhile, Al Jazeera is reporting that a spokesperson for Hamas has confirmed that the private university lecturer was a member of the Hamas organisation.

A man hangs a poster of Dr Fadi on his family house in the northern Gaza Strip on 21 April 2018.

Image via Mohammed Salem/REUTERS

3. His family is directly accusing Mossad of being behind the killing, saying, "We accuse the Mossad of being behind the assassination"

"We accuse the Israeli Mossad of the assassination of our son, the energy researcher," said a statement issued on behalf of the family. "Fadi was meant to fly on Sunday to Turkey, to chair an international conference on energy"

The family along with Senior Islamic Jihad leader Khaled al-Batash have urged Malaysian authorities to conduct a "comprehensive and rapid investigation" into the killing and "arrest those responsible" before the assassins could escape.

4. According to Humanitarian Care Malaysia (MyCARE), it was the lecturer's technical expertise that made him the target

The CEO of MyCARE, Kamarul Zaman Shaharul Anwar, told MalayMail that it was Dr Fadi's engineering brilliance that may have cost him his life.

"So, the only thing I believe that made this murder happen, is his expertise. His technical expertise. He has a PhD in electrical engineering. It is important, as well, for them (the Palestinians) to rebuild Gaza," MalayMail quoted him as saying.

The same sentiments were also echoed by his friend, Ahmad Shehaz, who claims that the lecturer was targeted to stop him from transferring his expertise, which he utilised heavily for the development of Malaysia's energy sector, back home.

According to a report in NST Online, Dr Fadi won a number of prestigious scientific awards, including one from the Malaysian government in 2016.

He had a PhD in electrical engineering, published 18 scholarly pieces of research, and was also a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Malaysia activist.

Image via BBC

Meanwhile, Bernama reported Zahid Hamidi, the caretaker Deputy PM, as saying that the police would "cover all angles" and work with Interpol and Aseanapol to track down the two assailants, who are believed to be linked to a foreign intelligence organisation

A wall is seen riddled with bullet holes near where the lecturer was shot dead.

Image via MalayMail


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