JERUSALEM (JTA) – Mohammed Abu Khdeir, the Palestinian teenager who was kidnapped and burned alive by Jews in a revenge killing, was recognized as a terror victim on Israel’s national memorial.
Khdeir’s name was added to the Victims of Acts of Terror Memorial at Mount Herzl and also appears on the government’s official list of terror victims.
His father, Hussein, told Ynet on Tuesday that “this is a great initiative meant to honour my son, but I’m more interested with something else entirely: For the court to do justice with those who burned my son alive and sentence them to the appropriate punishment.”
Khdeir’s father also told a Nazareth-based Arabic radio station that the family will request that his son’s name be removed from the list, Haaretz reported.
Khdeir is the first Arab killed by Jews to be added to the memorial, the director of Mount Herzl, Hagai Admon, told the Times of Israel.
Khdeir, 16, was kidnapped from his eastern Jerusalem neighbourhood early on the morning of July 2 and murdered hours later, less than a day after the funerals of Israeli teens Gilad Shaar, Naftali Fraenkel and Eyal Yifrach, who were kidnapped and slain by Palestinians near Hebron.
Three Jews are on trial for beating Khdeir and then setting him on fire. The suspects – Yosef Haim Ben-David, 29, and two 16-year-old males – told investigators that the slaying was in revenge for the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teens.
Israel’s Defense Ministry recognized Khdeir as a civilian victim of terror two weeks after he was murdered, an act that was widely reported. His name on the memorial was noted this week as Israel gears up for Yom Hazikaron, or Memorial Day, which begins at sundown Tuesday.