Family of slain Palestinian refuses to receive Peres


JERUSALEM (JTA) — The family of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, the teen killed in an alleged revenge attack, rejected a condolence visit by Israeli President Shimon Peres.

Peres’ security detail was turned away Monday when it came to prepare for the visit.

Other visits reportedly have been canceled by police and the Shin Bet security service due to security concerns, the Palestinian Maan news agency reported.

The family also rejected the condolence statement made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, according to an unnamed family member who told Maan that that “we refuse to accept the condolences of someone who agrees on the murder of our people in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza.”

A visit by a delegation of rabbis led by Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Lau was canceled, though it was unclear if it was because the family refused to receive the delegation or out of security concerns.

The rabbis condemned the murder of the Palestinian teen in statements on Monday.

“We as religious leaders need to lead with a conciliatory message to prevent continued pain and bereavement so that no one else is harmed,” Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef said.

Some Israeli government officials have come to the family’s home in eastern Jerusalem to offer their condolences, including Shelly Yachimovich, Amir Peretz and Avraham Burg of the Labor party.

The anti-racism organization Tag Meir was scheduled on Tuesday to bring over 600 Israelis by chartered buses for a visit Tuesday to the family’s mourning tent that the organization said was coordinated with the family.

Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday met with Tariq Abu Khdeir, the cousin of the murdered teen who was beaten by Israeli security forces during a riot on the day of the funeral. The teen’s family said he was the masked youth being beaten unconscious by Israeli soldiers in a video that is circulating on the Internet. The teen said he was not participating in the riot.

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