Tunisia says initial evidence shows foreign organization may be behind Hamas assassination

Reuters News
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Posted: Dec 19, 2016 12:54 PM

TUNIS (Reuters) - Tunisia's government said on Monday initial evidence showed a foreign organization may be behind the assassination last week of a Tunisian national who Palestinian group Hamas said was one of its drone experts.

Mohammed Zawari was shot multiple times in his car in front of his house in El Ain, near Sfax, on Thursday, officials said. Four rental cars were used in the killing and two handguns and silencers were seized.

"There is information that Zawari was a member of Hamas and our preliminary conclusions are that it is possible a foreign organization was behind this assassination," Tunisian Interior Minister Hedi Majdoub said at a news conference.

Majdoub said 10 Tunisians had been arrested but two foreigners who were suspected of plotting the killing had escaped. The minister gave no details on their nationalities or which organization may be involved.

Hamas in Gaza blamed Israel on Saturday for the killing of Zawari who it said had been a member for 10 years. Hamas provided no evidence to support its accusation, and an Israeli government spokesman at the time did not respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Tarek Amara; Writing by Patrick Markey; Editing by Alison Williams and Hugh Lawson)