RAMALLAH, July 2 (Xinhua) -- The murder of a 17-year-old teenager from Shu'fat, a Palestinian neighborhood of East Jerusalem, sparked on Wednesday an outrage among Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The Palestinians and the family of the killed teenager Mohamed Abu Khdeir, accused the Israeli settlers of kidnapping and murder in revenge for the three recently abducted and killed Israeli teenagers, who were last seen in southern West Bank on June 12.
The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) leadership called on the Israeli government to carry out immediate measures to stop assaults by Israeli settlers against the Palestinians in Jerusalem and in the West Bank.
"The practices of the settlers are criminal and racist," said an official statement issued following a meeting of the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah, chaired by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. "Abducting, killing and burning the body of the teenager is an awful crime," the statement added.
Earlier on Wednesday, an Israeli police spokesperson told Xinhua that the body was found in the Jerusalem forest about an hour after the police received a report on a missing teenager in Jerusalem. The police are still investigating a possible connection to the reported kidnapping.
The spokesman said that in early morning, an eyewitness reported he saw a teenager forced into a vehicle near Beit Hanina, an Arab neighborhood of Jerusalem. About the same time, the police received a report from a family that a 17-year-old teenager was missing when he went to the mosque near his home.
President Abbas condemned the killing of the Palestinian teenager and called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to officially condemn the tragedy.
Netanyahu has reportedly instructed his minister of interior security to enhance investigation and find the murderers. Netanyahu was quoted as saying that the killing of the Palestinian boy "was an awful assault."
The teenager's death sparked violent confrontations between the residents of several Arab neighborhoods in east Jerusalem and the Israeli police. Medical sources said that more than 40 Palestinians were injured in the clashes.
Meanwhile, Islamic Hamas movement condemned in a statement what it described as "the awful crime committed by the settlers. Hamas also called on President Mahmoud Abbas to stop security cooperation with Israel.
Tawfeek Tirawi, former chief of the Palestinian security intelligence, said in a press statement that "the coalition of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the radical right-wing in Israel "are fully responsible for the awful crimes they are carrying out against the Palestinian people."
Tensions have been running ever high between Israel and the Palestinians since Israel announced that three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped in southern West Bank on earlier last month. Two days ago, Israel announced that the three were found dead near the southern West Bank city of Hebron.
Israel held Hamas movement responsible for kidnapping and killing the three Israelis and launched a large-scale offensive in the West Bank. During the offensive, seven Palestinians were killed, three houses were demolished and more than 500 were detained.
JERUSALEM, July 2 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday ordered a swift investigation of the " hideous murder" of a Palestinian teen in Jerusalem, as clashes between Palestinians and security forces erupt across the city.
Netanyahu spoke with Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch and asked "that law-enforcement elements work as quickly as possible" in order to investigate who is behind the murder, a statement by the Prime Minister Office said. Full story
JERUSALEM, July 2 (Xinhua) -- Israeli security forces scrambled to confront hundreds of rioters in east Jerusalem on Wednesday following the discovery of a body of an Arab youth whom Palestinians suspect had been killed in retribution for the recent deaths of three Jewish teens kidnapped by militants in the West Bank.
A burnt body was found in a forest shortly after residents of Shuafat, an Arab neighborhood of northeastern Jerusalem, alerted police early on Wednesday to the possible abduction of a teenager who was seen forced into a vehicle at midnight Tuesday. Full story