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Israel returns body of slain Jordanian citizen to Jordanian authorities

May 22, 2017 4:14 P.M. (Updated: May 22, 2017 5:01 P.M.)
Muhammad al-Skaji
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities returned the body of slain Jordanian citizen Muhammad al-Skaji to Jordanian authorities on Sunday, according to a report from Israeli news website Ynet.

Al-Skaji, 57, was shot dead by Israeli forces in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem on May 13 after he stabbed and injured an Israeli police officer.

According to Ynet’s Hebrew-language site, al-Skaji’s body was transferred to Jordanian authorities on Sunday via the Israeli-controlled Allenby Bridge crossing between Jordan and the occupied West Bank.

Israel police said at the time of the attack that al-Skaji had arrived in the country one week prior on a tourist visa, after initially reporting him to be a Palestinian. Local media said that al-Skaji was of Palestinian origin and from the West Bank city of Jericho.

At the time of the attack, Israeli news daily Haaretz reported that Israeli police were investigating whether the attack may have been driven by a personal grievance or a mental issue, and that police also raided the hotel where al-Skaji had been staying and detained one of the trip organizers.

Last September, Israeli forces shot and killed a Jordanian national after he allegedly attempted to carry out at an knife attack at Damascus Gate in the Old City.

Meanwhile, 24 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis since the beginning of the year, most of them shot while allegedly or actually committing attacks -- with four such incidents having occurred in Jerusalem’s Old City.

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