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Palestinian Teen Found Dead: Retaliation For Kidnappings?

The partially burned body of an Arab teen was found in a forest on the outskirts of East Jerusalem Wednesday.
Posted at 8:39 AM, Jul 02, 2014

In Israel overnight, what local outlets are calling possible retaliation for the murder of three kidnapped Israeli teenagers.

“A day after Israel buried three students abducted near a Jewish settlement, Israeli police have found the body of a fourth teenager in a Jerusalem forest. ... His father has been taken by police to identify the body.” (Via Euronews)

The BBC reports witnesses saw an Arab teen being forced into a car in East Jerusalem early Wednesday. Hours later, his body was found partially burned, left in a forest west of the city.

According to The Jerusalem Post, authorities are investigating whether local family feuds had anything to do with the boy’s disappearance.

While police say it’s still unclear what happened, many Palestinians believe this latest murder is linked to the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teens who disappeared while hitchhiking earlier this month. (Via Twitter / @IDFSpokesperson

As proof, they’re pointing to hundreds of angry Israeli extremists who protested in Jerusalem, calling for revenge.  (Via Ynetnews

Eyewitnesses say the protesters were chanting “death to the Arabs.” (Via Twitter / @bencnn)

Both the Israeli government and Hebrew media described the triple murders as a terrorist act — flat out blaming Palestinian militant group Hamas. (Via CNN

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Palestinian outlets are reporting a slightly different version. 

One Palestinian who spoke to Gulf News expressed skepticism Hamas was behind the attack, suggesting instead Israel’s security forces had something to do with it. “Israel has taken advantage of the situation and milked it politically … Israel is good at creating scenes to justify their actions.”

As for this latest tragedy, a BBC reporter cautions against rushing to conclusions — pointing to the violence that already occurs among Palestinians and Israelis.

“This is an ongoing sectarian conflict, there are incidents which take place all the time, almost every day that we hear about which do not get much international attention.” (Via BBC

A blogger at +972 Magazine notes that's something Israeli media outlets have tended to overlook when covering the triple murders. “Providing this context may be taboo at a time when the entire country is focused on the fate of three kidnapped Israeli teens, but it is part and parcel of the story here.” 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered an investigation into the murder of the Arab teen and has warned vigilantes not to take the law into their own hands.