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Israel finds body of missing settler - source

Written by: Staff
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JERUSALEM, June 29 (Reuters) Israeli troops have found a body they suspect is that of a Jewish settler whom Palestinian militants claimed to have abducted earlier this week, security sources today said.

The sources said the army had notified the family of Eliyahu Asheri, 18, who went missing earlier this week, that they suspect they have recovered his body in the occupied West Bank, outside the city of Ramallah.

Palestinian militant group the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) said it had killed Asheri, Israel's Army Radio reported. The PRC said earlier this week that it had abducted Asheri and threatened to kill him if Israeli troops did not break off an incursion into the Gaza Strip that began yesterday.

A spokesman for the group has not responded to repeated phone calls for comment.

Israel has not confirmed that Asheri, of the Itamar settlement near the West Bank city of Nablus, had been kidnapped, but said he has been missing since Sunday.

Two Israeli security sources told Reuters that pathological tests were under way for final identification but that they suspected the body found was that of the missing settler.

REUTERS SY KN0952

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