Malaysiakini News

Assassins could have used Uzi to gun Palestinian lecturer down

Mohd Haikal Mohd Isa, Bernama  |  Published:  |  Modified:

The two “Middle Eastern looking” men accused of assassinating Palestinian lecturer Dr Mohamed Fadi al-Batsh in Setapak last month might have used a pistol or a submachine gun in the killing.

A security source told Bernama that the investigation team had also not dismiss the possibility that the suspect could be using a Uzi, a compact and easy to conceal submachine gun used especially by special forces operatives.

“It could be a pistol or submachine gun. Yes, they could be using a Uzi (for the Al-Batsh murder),” he said but cautioned that nothing was conclusive yet as the investigation was ongoing.

Inspector-general of police Fuzi Harun recently said they were still waiting for the ballistic report on the type of weapon used by the assailants.

The probability the men used an Uzi SMG to assassinate Al-Batsh could strengthen the accusations made by certain parties including by the victim's family that Israel's spy agency, Mossad was responsible for the killing.

Uzi submachine guns are produced by Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) and used extensively by the Israel Defence Force during the many conflicts in the region. As demand for Uzis increased all over the world, the weapon is now being manufactured by other companies outside Israel.

The submachine gun was also commonly used by other armed forces besides Israel.

Israel's Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman had denied Tel Aviv involvement with the murder, but it had not stopped the finger pointing on Mossad, which had been accused of assassinating Hamas and other Palestinian personalities in the past.

Despite Tel Aviv's denial, journalist and local newspaper in Israel claimed the killing of Al-Batsh bore all the hallmarks of a Mossad hit job.

Malaysian police also declined to pin the blame on Mossad operatives for the murder as the probe was ongoing, but had widen their investigations by sending a special team to Bangkok and requested cooperation from their counterpart in Singapore and the Philippines.

A security source disclosed to Bernama recently that the two men had used fake Serbia and Montenegro passports to enter Malaysia, a revelation which was later confirmed by the IGP. Using counterfeit travel document was a common tactics used by spy agents to slip in and out of a country undetected.

The source also revealed one of the suspect had used a Serbia and Montenegro passport of a 14 year-old boy.

After assassinating Al-Batsh, the men who were described as "highly professional" and connected to "Arab-Israeli conflict" fled to Thailand using illegal routes along the border.

Al-Batsh was killed while walking to a nearby mosque for a dawn prayer by two men riding a high-powered motorcycle, who sprayed about 10 gunshots at the Palestinian man.

The father of three had been living in Malaysia for about 10 years and was employed by a local university. His body was repatriated to Gaza Strip for a martyr burial.

- Bernama

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