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Family of murdered Palestinian teen criticize Israeli police

July 2, 2014 9:52 P.M. (Updated: July 3, 2014 4:26 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- The family of murdered Palestinian teenager Muhammad Abu Khdeir on Wednesday criticized Israeli police for their inaction in finding the killers of their son.

Abu Khdeir, 16, was kidnapped and killed early Wednesday in a suspected act of revenge for the killing of three Israeli youths.

His partially burnt body was found by police in a Jerusalem forest.

Speaking to a Ma'an reporter, Muhammad's father Hussein Abu Khdeir said the family notified police about the incident immediately after it happened but are still waiting for a response.

"We notified the police of the incident when it happened, but until now they haven't moved a muscle or arrested the kidnappers, despite their clear appearance in the surveillance cameras," he said.

"If things were different and an Arab kidnapped an Israeli, it would have been uncovered in moments."

Hussein said that following news of the killing he was detained and interrogated for several hours and his wife was forced to take a DNA test.

"Police want to cover the issue up, to protect the settlers, but the cameras were clear," he added.

The family were not allowed to see Muhammad's body before it was transferred to conduct an autopsy, his father said.

Hussein Abu Khdeir categorically denied rumors that Muhammad was killed in a family dispute.

'I just want my son to come home'

Muhammad's mother told Ma'an that he left the family home at 3:30 a.m. before dawn prayers.

"Fifteen minutes later my nephew, Muhammad's friend, came and told me about the kidnapping and asked about him. I told him he was at the mosque, but he went to the mosque and could not find him."

She then called his cellphone but it was switched off, at which point his father rushed outside and found witnesses who had seen the kidnapping before calling the police.

"I don't want anything. I just want my son to come home. I want him alive. Muhammad left as usual with his friends for al-Fajr prayers but he hasn't returned. I am waiting for him."

"Today my son was kidnapped and yesterday they tried to kidnap a kid from the Zalloum family. Who is next?" she added.

Over 170 Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli forces in Shufat following news of incident.

Israeli forces launched a large-scale crackdown following the disappearance of three Israeli youths on June 12, closing large areas of the West Bank and detaining over 500 Palestinians in daily arrest raids.

Six Palestinians have been killed during the search operations, including 16-year-old Yousef Abu Zagha, who was shot in the chest early Tuesday in Jenin.
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