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Israel working to return bodies of 1967 Jordanian soldiers found in Jerusalem

March 23, 2017 4:29 P.M. (Updated: March 23, 2017 4:29 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced in a statement on Wednesday that it had halted excavations in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sur Bahir after finding the remains of three Jordanian soldiers earlier this month.

Reports earlier this month stated that the bodies of two unidentified soldiers had been found in the area.

However, the ministry said that three bodies had in fact been found, and identified them as belonging to Jordanian soldiers who fought in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

According to locals, the district west of Sur Bahir where the remains were found, was a Jordanian military camp named al-Jaras which Israeli forces occupied during a battle with the Jordanian army in 1967 in which six Israeli soldiers and 85 Jordanian soldiers were killed.

The Israeli ministry said that procedures were underway to transfer the bodies to Jordan.

Meanwhile, Israel continues to hold the bodies of a number of Palestinians who allegedly or actually committed attacks against Israelis, in a policy which rights groups have denounced as collective punishment and a violation of international law.
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