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Blinken expresses condolences over alleged killing of two American teenagers in West Bank, calls for investigation

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during a press conference with the Prime Minister of Albania in Tirana on February 15, 2024. (Photo by ADNAN BECI/AFP via Getty Images)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday expressed his “deepest condolences” to the two American teenagers “allegedly killed” in the West Bank and said their deaths should be investigated.

Israeli forces allegedly killed two 17-year-old Palestinian Americans in the West Bank less than a month ago, CNN previously reported.

“We have made it clear that the incidents that you mentioned require an investigation. We need to know the facts. And if appropriate, there needs to be accountability,” Blinken said at a news conference. ” In response to a question from CNN’s Alex Marquardt in Albania.

Additionally, an American woman was taken from her home in the West Bank and detained by Israeli forces more than a week ago. His family alleges that he was beaten and denied medication while in custody. A spokesperson for the Israel Prison Service told CNN that he was “detained in accordance with the law” and that he was “given medical treatment for medical problems that arose before his arrest.”

Two other Americans were detained by Israeli forces during a raid on a home in Gaza last week, according to a relative in the United States.

“With respect to the detainees, there are limits on what I can say because of the privacy laws and the requirements that come with them,” Blinken said.

“I can only say in general terms without reference to specific cases that we insist that people be treated fairly, with due process and humanity,” he said. “This is something we insist on, no matter where a US citizen is detained. And we will continue to insist on it.”

Some background: The US State Department said Tuesday that an American died in the West Bank on Saturday, but did not release the name or the circumstances of his death. The group “Defense for Children – Palestine” said the American was 17-year-old Mohammed Ahmed Mohammed Khadour. Israeli forces shot him in the head on Saturday while he was traveling by car in the West Bank town of Biddu, the organization said.

Last month, another American, 17-year-old Taufik Abdel Jabbar, was shot in the head and chest, his father told CNN. The IDF and Israeli police told CNN they received a report that an off-duty police officer and an Israeli civilian opened fire on a Palestinian man suspected of throwing stones in the area of ​​al-Majra ash-Sharqiya. ,

His father Hafez Abdel Jabbar rejected the Israeli claims in an interview with CNN and said there was no way his son would have thrown stones at him from where he was standing. Abdel Jabbar said he has video evidence of the incident, which he has sent to the US Consulate and some senators, and said that finding answers about his son’s death has not been easy so far.

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