Israel returns bodies of killed Palestinian fighters

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Palestinian mourners wave the green flag of the Islamist movement Hamas as they attend the funeral of two Hamas members, Adel and Imad Awadallah, killed by occupation forces in 1998, after Israel returned the remains of four Palestinians to their families to their families, on April 30, 2014 in the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Photo: AFP - Ahmad Gharabli)

Published Wednesday, April 30, 2014

More than 1,000 people gathered in the West Bank city of Ramallah Wednesday for the funerals of two Hamas fighters killed by Israeli forces in 1998, whose remains had just been returned.

Israel transferred the remains of Imad Awadallah, 48, and his 46-year-old brother Adel, to Palestinian officials at a checkpoint in the northern West Bank overnight, Palestinian activists said.

They also handed over the bodies of two others, including a suicide bomber who blew himself up at a Jerusalem restaurant in 2001 during the second Palestinian intifada (uprising).

The Palestinian National Campaign to Return the Bodies of the Martyrs says Israel still holds the bodies of some 29 Palestinians in a special cemetery for "enemy combatants" in the Jordan Valley.

The exact circumstances of the deaths of the wanted Awadallah brothers, who were killed by Israeli troops in 1998 near the southern West Bank city of Hebron, have never been revealed.

In July 2011, the then defense minister Ehud Barak reneged on an agreement to hand over the bodies of some 84 fighters killed since 1967, including the Awadallah brothers.

(AFP, Al-Akhbar)


A person that blows himself up in a restaurant is not a martyr.

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