Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi said on Sunday that his government suspects Israel of being behind the assassination of aviation engineer Mohammed Zawahri on December 15.
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Zawahri was shot to death outside his home in Sfax, Tunisia, on December 15. According to a statement by Hamas two days after the attack, Zawahri was a member of the organization's military wing and one of the leaders of its drone program.
The investigation into the attack is continuing, Essebsi said on Thursday during a New Year's Day speech. He rejected criticism that the Tunisian government was not doing enough to advance the investigation, adding that the government would not hesitate to turn to the international community once it had collected sufficient evidence.
Essebsi's statement was the highest-level indication that Israel was suspected of involvement in the attack. Hamas has previously pointed the finger at Israel.
Responding to a question about the attack on December 21, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said: “If someone was killed in Tunisia, he is not likely to be a peace activist or a Nobel Prize candidate. Israel does what needs to be done to defend its interests.”