Body of Israeli citizen, taken by militants, being returned

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military said Thursday that the body of an Israeli teen that was taken by Palestinian militants from a West Bank hospital is being returned to his family.

Relatives of Tiran Pero, 17, said Palestinian militants in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin entered the hospital where Pero was seeking treatment after a car crash. They disconnected him from hospital equipment while still alive, according to his father, and removed him from the hospital. The Israeli military said Pero was already dead when he was snatched.

Pero was from Israel’s Druze Arab minority.

The incident threatened to ratchet up already boiling tensions between Israel and the Palestinians. Palestinian militants in the past have carried out kidnappings to seek concessions from Israel.

More than 130 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli-Palestinian fighting in the West Bank and east Jerusalem this year, making 2022 the deadliest year since 2006.

The fighting has surged since a series of Palestinian attacks in the spring killed 19 people in Israel.

The Israeli army says most of the Palestinians killed have been militants. But stone-throwing youths protesting the incursions and others not involved in confrontations have also been killed.

Another eight Israelis have been killed in a fresh wave of Palestinian attacks in recent weeks. On Wednesday, twin explosions at two bus stops in Jerusalem killed a teen and wounded at least 18 people.