POSTED: 6:12 a.m. HST, Jul 2, 2014
LAST UPDATED: 6:39 a.m. HST, Jul 2, 2014
WASHINGTON >> The Obama administration is condemning the killing of a Palestinian teenager as a "heinous murder" and is calling on the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
In a series of posts on Twitter, National Security Adviser Susan Rice said Wednesday the U.S. is paying close attention to the investigation into the death of 17-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdeir, which followed the discovery in the West Bank on Monday of the bodies of three abducted Israeli teenagers. She also said the U.S. sends condolences to his family and the Palestinian people.
In a statement, Secretary of State John Kerry called the killing "sickening" and said "there are no words to convey adequately our condolences to the Palestinian people."
He noted that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged that no one "take the law into their own hands" and said that acts of vengeance would only destabilize an already "explosive and emotional situation."
"The world has too often learned the hard way that violence only leads to more violence and at this tense and dangerous moment, all parties must do everything in their power to protect the innocent and act with reasonableness and restraint, not recrimination and retribution," Kerry said.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has accused Israeli extremists of killing the teen. His body was found in a Jerusalem forest, raising fears that he was killed as revenge for the recent killings of the three Israeli teens.