Greek government condemns killing of Israeli teenagers

Greek Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos on Tuesday condemned the killing of three Israeli teenage boys who were abducted earlier this month in the West Bank and whose bodies were found near the town of Halhul, north of Hebron, on Monday.

“We condemn in the most unequivocal manner the atrocious murder of the three Israeli teenagers who were abducted on 12 June, in the West Bank, and were found yesterday, near Hebron. There is nothing that can justify or legitimize blind violence against innocent civilians," Venizelos said in an official statement.

Naftali Frenkel and Gilad Shaar, both aged 16, and 19-year-old Eyal Yifrach were last seen at a junction near Hebron as they hitchhiked home, the BBC reported. The discovery of their bodies 17 days after they disappeared triggered a massive manhunt during which five Palestinians were killed and more than 400 arrested, according to the AFP.

"In the wake of this tragedy, there is an even greater need to avoid the escalation of violence," Venizelos's statement read. "The whole of the international community must work to avert the repetition of similar actions and to help peace and security prevail in the region.”