Three suspects in killing of Palestinian teen to be released

Photo: Three suspects in killing of Palestinian teen to be released
 / Israel-Arab Relations

Three of the six Israelis held over the abduction and killing of a Palestinian teenager last week are to be released, Israeli media said, AFP reported.

"Three of six suspects in murder of Palestinian teen Mohammed Abu Khder to be freed Thursday," the Haaretz daily said.

"If there are no new developments three of the six suspects... are expected to be freed tomorrow," news website Nana reported.

Israel arrested six Jewish extremists on Sunday in connection with the killing of 16-year-old Abu Khder on July 2, in a gruesome attack that triggered days of clashes in annexed east Jerusalem and Arab Israeli towns.

The next day a source close to the investigation said that three had confessed.

NGO Honenu, which describes itself as an "Israeli Zionist legal aid organisation" and is representing all six, said in a statement Wednesday that following an appeal against their continued remand in custody, the three who deny involvement would be allowed to go home.

The attack is believed to have been in revenge for the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenagers in the occupied West Bank last month, and the twin attacks have ratcheted up tensions throughout Israel and the Palestinian territories.

Authorities have placed a gag order on most aspects of the investigation into Abu Khder's murder.

Palestinians have said they have low expectations that Israel will bring the youngster's killers to justice and releasing any suspects is likely to spark fresh street unrest.

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Tags: Israel, Palestine