UPDATING WITH HIS BURIAL, HANIYEH'S REMARKS
Hundreds of Palestinian mourners on Thursday evening turned out for attending the funeral of Fadi al-Batsh, a Palestinian thought to be linked to Hamas who was killed by unknown assailants in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday.
The mourners performed funeral prayers at the body of al-Batsh in the Al-Omari mosque in the town of Jabalia, northern the Gaza Strip, before being buried in Al-Shuhada cemetery northern the strip.
"The guilty hands which assassinated al-Batsh will be cut off," Ismail Haniyeh, head of the Hamas political bureau, said during al-Batsh’s funeral.
"The blood of the martyrs is the fuel for the path of victory and liberation," he added .
Haniyeh also thanked, Egypt and Malaysia for facilitating the entry and burial of the body of the Palestinian young academician in Gaza in his hometown of Jabalia.
Al-Batsh’s body, accompanied by his widow and children, was received earlier Thursday at Gaza’s Rafah border crossing with Egypt by dozens of Palestinians and leaders of Palestinian political factions.
On Saturday, al-Batsh, a research engineer, was gunned down near his home in the Malaysian capital by two gunmen who fled the scene.
While his family has accused Israeli spy agency Mossad of having carried out the assassination, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has denied Israel’s involvement in the killing.
According to a source at Cairo International Airport, al-Batsh’s body was flown from Kuala Lumpur to Cairo by a Saudi airliner.
“His body was then taken to the [Egypt-Gaza] crossing by ambulance,” the source, speaking anonymously due to restrictions on speaking to media, said.
Israeli media has described al-Batsh as “a Hamas engineer and an expert in drone-making”, hinting at the possibility that the Mossad had played a role in his death.
The Israeli intelligence services have killed numerous Palestinian resistance activists in the past, many of them overseas.