Three Israeli teenagers, two 16 and one 19, went missing Thursday night in the West Bank and are feared to be kidnapped, Haaretz reports. The Border Police and the Israel Police are searching for the teens near Hebron, and roadblocks have been erected near Kiryat Arba. The teenagers are yeshiva students at Makor Chaim who were believed to be hitchhiking to Modi’in. One of the teens reportedly has U.S. citizenship.
According to Haaretz:
The Shin Bet security service has warned in recent weeks of increasingly frequent attempts to kidnap Israeli soldiers and citizens in the West Bank. According to Shin Bet data, in the past nine months there have been 11 cases of Palestinians incarcerated in Israel making contact with operatives in the West Bank in an attempt to carry out kidnappings.
In September, Israeli soldier Tomer Hazan was kidnapped and killed by two Palestinians who had invited him to the West Bank. Prosecutors say the kidnapping was part a plan to bring about the release of the killers’ brother, in prison in Israel.
We’ll update you as we learn more.
Batya Ungar-Sargon is a freelance writer who lives in New York. Her Twitter feed is @bungarsargon.