World Bulletin/News Desk
Palestinian resistance faction Hamas condemned Monday what it described as the "execution" of a Palestinian drivers who had been found hanging in an Israeli bus and called for escalating resistance in Jerusalem and the West Bank.
"The crime of hanging Palestinian youth Hassan al-Ramouni is a reflection of Israeli racism," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said in a statement.
Late Sunday, al-Ramouni, a 32-year-old Palestinian driver, was found hanged in an Israeli bus in West Jerusalem.
Eyewitnesses said that a quarrel erupted between the deceased driver's family and Israeli security forces after the Israeli police allegedly hinted the incident was suicide.
Some Palestinian media outlets, however, released photos of al-Ramouni's body showing signs of bruises and cuts in the back, abdomen and face, an Anadolu Agency correspondent reported.
Abu Zuhri held Israel fully responsible for the "heinous execution" and its aftermath, describing the incident as a "dangerous escalation."
He also called for "responding to Israeli crimes by escalating all kinds of resistance tactics and revenge operations."
The incident is expected to ratchet up tension in Jerusalem where clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces have been flaring over the past few weeks.
Tension has already been running high since Israeli authorities sealed access to the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in occupied East Jerusalem after the shooting of an extremist Jewish rabbi in the city before reopening it hours later.
The unrest mounted further after Israeli forces killed a young Palestinian man suspected of shooting the rabbi in a raid on his East Jerusalem home.
Several Israeli parliamentarians have also entered the mosque complex in recent days, drawing the ire of Muslim worshippers and official condemnation from Arab and Muslim countries.
Groups of Jewish settlers, too, have forced their way into the site, prompting clashes between Muslim worshippers and Israeli forces.
For Muslims, Al-Aqsa represents the world's third holiest site. Jews, for their part, refer to the area as the "Temple Mount," claiming it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Middle East War. It later annexed the holy city in 1980, claiming it as the capital of the self-proclaimed Jewish state – a move never recognized by the international community.
Last Mod: 17 Kasım 2014, 15:34