Deadly Israeli search for teens enters third week - Tucson News Now

Deadly Israeli search for teens enters third week

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Relatives of a Palestinian are in grief after a man is fatally shot as part of an Israeli search  for missing teens. (Source: CNN) Relatives of a Palestinian are in grief after a man is fatally shot as part of an Israeli search for missing teens. (Source: CNN)
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QALANDIA, WEST BANK (CNN) - Israeli-Palestinian tensions are rising as Israel's search for three missing teenagers enters its third week.

It's the biggest Israeli operation in the West Bank in more than 12 years.

More than a 1,000 Palestinian homes have been searched and the Palestinian death toll from the operation is mounting.

Residents of the Qalandia refugee camp prepare for the return of Mustafa Aslan. He died Wednesday morning from an Israeli gunshot wound to the head six days before.

In his home, grief and anger combine.

"He had a small child," cries his sister Fatin. "Who had yet to call him papa. Shame on them."

An Israeli sniper shot Mustafa during a raid on the camp. The trail of dried blood is still visible on the roof of a home.

Israeli forces entered the camp at night as part of the West Bank operation searching for three Israeli teenagers who went missing June 12.

The first to be killed in the operation was Ahmed Sabbarin, a resident of the Jalazon refugee camp near Ramallah. In both cases, the Israeli army says their soldiers used deadly fire when their lives were endangered.

Whatever the case, another Palestinian family is left mourning.

"Enough!" demands his father. "Enough! You've killed our children!"

Outside the West Bank city of Hebron, Israeli troops go from house to house. More than a 1,000 homes have been searched, including that of Ahmed Qawasmeh.

"They threw everything," he says. "The beds and clothing, on to the floor."

It's the same house after house.

The soldiers scan from the rooftops and search through junkyards in an operation that the Israeli army says will spare no effort to return the boys.

This is the largest Israeli operation in the West Bank in more than 12 years. It's been going on for two weeks now, and still there is no sign of the missing teenagers.

And the longer the search goes on, the more tensions rise.

At the Israeli checkpoint near the Qalandia refugee camp, boys stone the watch tower charred black from countless clashes over the years.

Rocks and bottles fly in one direction. Tear gas and rubber bullets in the other. Israelis and Palestinians locked by a seemingly endless cycle of action and reaction in a deadly embrace.

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