Israel overreacting to youths' disappearance, says Palestinian FM
A top Palestinian official told reporters Friday that Israel is overreacting to the disappearance of three missing Jewish teenagers from a West Bank settlement, according to Agence France Presse.
"Three kids have disappeared, but in exchange for that the Israeli army has taken 300 Palestinians... they have destroyed more than 150 Palestinian homes since last week," said Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al Malki said Friday.
"Their reaction went beyond logic and what infuriates me the most is the lack of reaction from the international community," he added.
Last week, three Israeli teens, two 16-year-olds and one 19-year-old were allegedly abducted in the West Bank. Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has blamed the kidnapping on Hamas, but Tel Aviv has yet to provide any form of evidence or links that Hamas is behind the youths' disappearance.
"He [Netanyahu] cannot keep blaming one side without showing evidence. When you go to court if you don't show evidence you lose your case," Malki told AFP.
Malki and others are accusing Israel of using the alleged kidnapping as a way to dismantle the newly-formed Palestinian unity government by blaming the disappearance of the teens on Hamas.
Malki, while skeptical that Hamas is behind the act, says that if the Gaza leadership is at all linked to the kidnapping, it would indeed pose as a risk to the unity government.
"If it comes to be known that Hamas is behind it (the kidnapping), then of course the unity government will be at risk. We are not going to tolerate and accept the fact that Hamas uses and abuses this kind of reconciliation government just to blow the national interests of the Palestinian people," Malki said.
Since the alleged kindapping, more than 330 Palestinians have been arrested and search raids have been conducted in more than 1,000 locations, according to the AFP report. Some Palestinian youth have even been killed in the raids.