Daily Israel Report

Israeli Students Ask UN Chief to Help Locate Missing Teens

If yeshiva students were kidnapped by terorrists, UN has the power to assist in their release, write students to Ban Ki-moon.
By Elad Benari, Canada
First Publish: 6/14/2014, 12:50 AM

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
Reuters

Israel’s National Student and Youth Council on Friday sent a letter to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, urging him to take action and help locate the three yeshiva students who went missing on Thursday.

In the letter, the Council notes that “a terror kidnapping is a very reasonable scenario.”

“Therefore, it is within the power of the United Nations to assist in this regard,” wrote the students. “If it turns out that it is indeed a terror related kidnapping, it is against international law, since the innocent abductees are under the age of 18.”

“At this stage, we will appreciate your help in locating these innocent three teenagers, as well as your involvement towards their immediate release,” the students wrote Ban.

The three students, two of whom are from the Makor Chaim Yeshiva in the religious kibbutz Kfar Etzion, went missing Thursday night.

All communication was lost with them as they were on their way home from the yeshiva, located in Gush Etzion, roughly between Jerusalem and Hevron in Judea. Security sources suspect they may have been taken into a vehicle driven by terrorists that stopped for them as they waited at a popular hitchhiking spot.

Massive IDF and police forces have been searching in the hours since the suspected kidnapping to try and locate the three young students, one of whom is a joint Israeli-American citizen.

IDF Spokesman Motti Almoz said on Friday evening that the IDF and the entire defense establishment were doing everything in their power to locate the three missing students.

He would not go into further details due to the sensitivity of the situation, but added, “The activities in Judea and Samaria require intelligence and operational sensitivity. We understand the need to know more information, but suggest that everyone be patient. After the incident is over, we will provide more details.”

Justice Minister Tzipi Livni met U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in London and asked him to help in the search for the three yeshiva students.

Livni told Kerry that rapid action is necessary under the circumstances.

After Livni’s meeting with Kerry, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke with Kerry on the phone and linked the suspected kidnapping with the inclusion of Hamas in the new Hamas-Fatah government.

"What is happening on the ground since Hamas was added to the government is a deterioration of the situation. This is the direct result of allowing a murderous and racist terrorist organization into the government," Netanyahu told Kerry.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)