Islamic Jihad blames Israel for assassination of Hamas-affiliated engineer

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It gave no further details on his scientific accomplishments but said he had made "important contributions" and took part in global forums in the field of energy.

Hamas did not issue a response to the reported assassination.

The lecturer's family, meanwhile, said Mossad was behind his assassination.

Malaysian police chief in Gombak district, Mazlan Lazim, said that two gunmen on a motorcycle fired more than 14 bullets at Batsh as he was leaving his house to attend dawn prayer at a nearby mosque.

There has been no comment from Israeli authorities on the accusations.

Mazlan said a recording of a closed-circuit television camera near the scene showed the two assailants waited for about 20 minutes for the Palestinian lecturer. The Mossad is believed to have assassinated Palestinian militants and scientists in the past, but has never confirmed such operations. He had been reportedly living in Malaysia for 10 years. He worked as a teacher at a private university and was active in a Malaysian charity for Palestinian welfare.

Israel and Hamas are bitter foes who have fought three wars since 2008. Palestinian websites have identified him as a relative of a senior official in the Gaza branch of the Islamic Jihad group.

Israel accuses Hamas, which is sworn to Israel's destruction and has carried out dozens of deadly suicide bombings against it, of cynically exploiting Gaza civilians for its political aims by staging the protests and trying to carry out attacks under their cover.