A Lebanese newspaper reported that the assassinated Tunisian aviation engineer, Mohammed Al-Zoari, who was developing drones for the Hamas, also worked with Hezbollah. A Hamas official accused Israel of assassinating him. The Tunisian authorities claim that it does not appear that a foreign intelligence agency assassinated Zoari.

Mohammed Al-Zoari, drone engineer, was shot dead in Tunisia

Mohammed Al-Zoari, drone engineer, was shot dead in Tunisia Photo Credit: Channel 2 News (Screenshot)

Israel has been accused of assassinating a Tunisian aviation engineer with ties to Hamas, a Palestinian terror organization. According to reports by a number of media outlets, Mohammed Al-Zoari was shot at point-blank range while in his car in the city of Sfax in Tunisia on Thursday.

Friday evening, a Hamas official, Mushir Al-Masri, told a local Tunisian radio station that Israel is the only one that would benefit from Zoari’s assassination, stating that the “Zionist enemy is behind the assassination.”

Zoari's car in which he was shot at point-blank range

Zoari’s car in which he was shot at point-blank range Photo Credit: Channel 2 News (Screenshot)

A senior-level Tunisian journalist claimed that the Mossad, Israel’s national intelligence agency, had been tracking the engineer for some time because of his connections with Hamas and assassinated him.

The same journalist said that Zoari left Tunisia in the early 1990s and immigrated to Syria where he came into contact with members of Hamas and began working with its armed wing. Accordingly, after Zoari began developing drones for Hamas, he came under surveillance and was eventually assassinated in his car by Mossad agents.

Shortly after the news of engineer’s death came to light, a number of suspects were arrested by the local Tunisian authorities, which emphasized that the investigation into Zoari’s death does not suggest that he was assassinated by a foreign intelligence agency.

Hamas blames Israel for assassination

Hamas blames Israel for assassination Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

New reports from the Hezbollah-affiliated Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar state that in addition to helping Hamas with its drone development, the engineer was working with Hezbollah as well.

A close associate of Zoari, Kareem Abed Al-Salam, said to Arab media outlets that Zoari helped developed Hamas’ aviation program. “He was the connection between Hamas and the Syrian regime and with the Iranian regime before the Syrian war broke out,” Al-Salam said. He further added that Zoari left Syria after the war began to avoid taking sides in country’s internal conflict.