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Thousands of Israelis join online hate campaign

July 3, 2014 1:29 P.M. (Updated: July 7, 2014 11:03 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Thousands of Israeli soldiers and civilians have joined social media campaigns calling for the murder of Palestinians since the discovery of three missing Israeli youths on Monday.

Hundreds of photos have been posted on Facebook accounts and Twitter calling for revenge following the killing of three Israeli teens who went missing on June 12.

A Facebook page entitled "The People of Israel Demand Vengeance!" gained over 36,000 likes in just under two days before being removed, as users posted pictures of themselves holding signs demanding revenge.

Israeli soldiers, some of whom may currently serve in the occupied territories, posted pictures online calling for the death of Palestinians.

The online incitement campaign is the latest in a series of social media movements in Israel defending or promoting violence by Israeli forces.

In April, a Facebook page created to support an Israeli soldier who cocked his gun and aimed at Palestinian teenagers in Hebron received over 60,000 likes.

The soldier, from the elite Nahal infantry unit, was suspended after video footage of the incident emerged.

Following the disappearance of three Israel teens on June 12, over 10,000 people joined an online campaign to kill a Palestinian "terrorist" every hour until the teens were returned to their families.

The online campaigns have manifested into brutal attacks on Palestinians.

Late Tuesday, a Palestinian teenager, Muhammad Abu Khdeir, was kidnapped in Shufat and his body was later found in west Jerusalem.

The murder is suspected to be a "revenge" attack by Israeli settlers.

Earlier Tuesday, hundreds of Israelis marched through Jerusalem's town center chanting "Death to Arabs!".

A mob of young Israelis then tried to attack a Palestinian worker at a McDonald's restaurant in Jerusalem while a young Israeli was arrested for spraying pepper spray at a Palestinian taxi driver.

Numerous racist attacks were reported across Jerusalem and Israel.

Israeli minister of justice, Tzipi Livni, on Wednesday condemned the social media campaign.

Days earlier, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wrote on his official twitter account: "Vengeance for the blood of a small child, Satan has not yet created. Neither has vengeance for the blood of 3 pure youths who were on their way home to their parents who will not see them anymore."
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