UN condemns killing of Israeli soldier

Jerusalem, Sep 22 (IANS) UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process Robert Serry condemned Sunday the abduction and killing of Israeli soldier Tomer Hazan by a Palestinian who intended to trade the soldier's body for the release of his jailed brother.

In a statement, Serry emphasised the need for calm on the ground during this "critical moment" in the US-led Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, which restarted July 30 after a three-year halt, Xinhua reported.

The UN envoy said the "shocking murder follows a series of violent incidents in the West Bank".

In the past weeks, several Palestinians were killed in Jenin and Qalandia during raids by the Israel army.

He urged both Israelis and Palestinians to act responsibly and avoid actions that risk undermining the prospects for the resumed negotiations.

Serry issued his statement a few hours after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israel's Army Radio that "the criminal incident proves once again that the fight against terrorism is constant".

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