By Yousef Aljamal
On April 21, two unidentified men riding a high-powered motorcycle shot dead a Palestinian engineering lecturer in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Palestinian Ambassador Anwar Al-Agha identified the victim as Fadi Albatsh, 35.
His family accused the Mossad of standing behind the assassination.
— UniKL Official (@UniKLOfficial) April 21, 2018
The Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement and Hamas condemned the assassination, directing fingers at Mossad as well. Hamas said in a statement that Albatsh was one of its members.
?? #Malaysia : Students of Dr. Fadi Albatsh crying after seeing remains of their lecturer at Malaysian hospital. Dr. Fadi was killed by unidentified assassins shooting last Saturday early morning. pic.twitter.com/6RSEGSMiNB
— mohammed mosleh ?? (@MohammadMusle18) April 23, 2018
Malaysian friends of the renowned scientist, whose Ph.D. research was focused on a device that would have reduced 18% of electrical resistance and could have been useful to solve the electricity outages problem in the Gaza Strip, mourn the victim and remember him as a very talented academic and a good-hearted person, always with a charming smile on his face.
“The news broke at about 9 am. The incredulity was palpable. No one could believe it. No one wanted to. Then when it was confirmed, I just broke down in tears, in the middle of a shopping mall. I sat transfixed, trying to make sense out of this heinous act,” said Azra Banu, a Malaysian activist, to The Palestine Chronicle.
“He was easy to talk to and was never without a smile on his face. Attentive, giving his attention to whoever was talking to him. I last saw him just over a month ago, at a cycling event calling for the relocation of Giro d’Italia. I cycled past him and he and some Palestinian brothers were cheering me on, jesting that they needed to get into shape,” she added.
Fadi Mohammad al-Batsh, a Hamas-affiliated professor, was "believed to have become a liability for a country hostile to Palestine," according to Malaysia's security chief https://t.co/Y8kPEXhGJA
— AFP news agency (@AFP) April 21, 2018
One of his friends, who asked not to be identified, said:
“Fadi was a friend and a colleague. I have never met a more active, passionate, and enthusiastic researcher like Fadi. He was an asset to Palestine and science and a liability to the enemies of Palestine and enemies of enlightenment. Only Israel benefits from murdering Fadi. Israel has always come after Palestinian intellectuals, academics, and talents. This has Israel’s dirty, and blood-soaked fingerprint all over it.”
Words of appreciation also came from the academic community.
— New Straits Times (@NST_Online) April 23, 2018
Dr. Mohd Nazari Ismail, a lecturer at the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur, told The Palestine Chronicle:
“He was an outstanding and very committed academic in the field of electrical engineering. He published many outstanding academic papers. His students really loved him because he was a very committed teacher and very helpful to them.”
Dr. Musa Mohd Nordin, the Chairman of Viva Palestina Malaysia (VPM), said:
“He was undoubtedly an academic scholar of distinction, a genius really. He won the Ivy League, Yayasan Khazanah-VPM scholarship for his Ph.D. studies in 2013. Three years later, in August 2016, he received both the Special Mention Award and High Achiever Award, at the Yaysan Khazanah Scholarship, 10th Anniversary, presented by the Prime Minister of Malaysia. This is apart from the many other honors and prizes for his scholastic excellence. And within a year of working as a senior electrical engineering lecturer in UNIKL, he won a research grant from the Malaysian government and was supervising 3 postgraduate engineering students. His work and research in electrical engineering and power electronics have been widely published in the top tier engineering journals.”
Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi says the killers of Hamas member Fadi Al-Batsh in Kuala Lampur earlier today hail from the Caucasus region, and could have some links with foreign intelligence agencies. pic.twitter.com/eOAho1iBoo
— Quds News Network (@QudsNen) April 21, 2018
He also noted:
“Despite his brilliance and multiple achievements, Fadi remained a very humble person, soft-spoken, thoughtful and contemplative. He has been very active on various platforms, including VPM, Boycott Divestment & Sanctions (BDS) and Palestinian Students Organisations in Malaysia to advance the cause for justice and peace for Palestine.