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Teen Beaten by Israeli Police Had Baltimore Ties

The teen who was reportedly the victim of police brutality is under house arrest.

Tariq Abu Khdeir upon his release from jail in Israel July 6, 2014. (Credit: YouTube/ABC 2 News)
Tariq Abu Khdeir upon his release from jail in Israel July 6, 2014. (Credit: YouTube/ABC 2 News)
A Palestinian-American teen beaten and detained in Jerusalem last week has been released by Israeli police, according to Fox 45, which reported he had ties to Baltimore.

Tariq Abu Khdeir, 15, was born in Baltimore and recently moved to Tampa, Fox 45 reported.

He was on a monthlong vacation in Israel for a wedding and family reunion when violence broke out, The Baltimore Sun reported.

His 16-year-old cousin—Mohammed Abu Khdeir—was kidnapped from East Jerusalem Wednesday and burned to death, the Wall Street Journal reported, possibly in retaliation for three Israeli teenagers found murdered on the West Bank in June.

According to the New York Times, right-wing Jewish extremists and Islamic terror group Hamas were believed to be trading acts of violence.

Police said Tariq Abu Khdeir was armed with a slingshot at riots that broke out Thursday after his cousin's death, and that he was in the company of six youths with knives who were also taken into custody, according to The Baltimore Sun.

Khdeir told ABC News that he was not armed and did not participate in the riots but was merely watching.

Video surfaced that showed police beating a person identified as Khdeir. (Warning: The video contains graphic images.) Both Israel's Justice Ministry and the U.S. State Department are investigating the incident, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Khdeir had a broken nose and chin as well as injuries to his eyes when he was reunited with his family, according to NBC News. He reportedly went unconscious and does not remember the beating.

After his family paid more than $800 in bail, Khdeir was placed on house arrest for nine days, the duration of his trip, according to WFLA; Khdeir is expected to return to Tampa on July 16, according to New Tampa Patch.

"It is unacceptable that Tariq has been sentenced to house arrest while those who beat him so brutally remain free," Hassan Shibly, chief executive director for the Florida Council on American-Islamic Relations, said in a statement issued Sunday.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations planned to hold a press conference with details on Khdeir's condition and situation at 4 p.m. Monday.

Abroad, the violence escalated, as the Israelis and Palestinians traded rocket fire and airstrikes Monday, according to The Jerusalem Post.

In the United States, citizens have mobilized to protest and mourn.

On Saturday, there was a rally near the White House regarding the treatment of Palestinians by Israeli police, according to The Baltimore Sun. The newspaper reported that Khdeir's aunt—who lives in Canton and owns House of Spirits on Fleet Street—delivered words of compassion for those involved in the dispute, regardless of their affiliation, stating: "I feel bad for every mother on both sides losing their kids this way."

Last week in Pikesville, the Jewish community held a memorial service for the three Israeli teens who were killed, according to WBAL, which reported one attendee said that it "really felt like they were our children too."

Tee Vee July 08, 2014 at 07:37 AM
What is going on in the Middle East is disgusting, but this kid is American! What is our government going to do about it? It's just wrong.
John Cofiell July 08, 2014 at 08:51 AM
Don't start nothing,there won't be nothing.
Matthew Riesner July 08, 2014 at 12:46 PM
Where is the state department in all of this? He is a US citizen that was hurt due to violence between 2 extremist groups. I'm sick of the attitude of the US State department that Israel does no wrong. Fact is no one is correct and if the US was smart, we would keep it's nose out of theocratic foreign politics.
Sal Anthony July 09, 2014 at 02:43 PM
He's a punk who cares
Matthew Silverglate July 09, 2014 at 05:22 PM
Either way, this went to far and is wrong. What I don't get is why, if the kid was knocked out in the first couple seconds, why they had to hold him down and near the end you can see his legs in the air, if he was knocked out they would be on the ground. Also looking at his body language I don't think he threw any Molotov cocktails but when he says he didn't throw rocks he touched his arm, his right arm and since he is right handed this is as psychology would lend to the idea that he is lying, Not to mention the fact that the reported didn't ask him if he threw rocks he said it out of no where... even if he did throw rocks, the police should not be able to do that to him and they need to be punished. I would like to know the full story though, Like lets see the video from the beginning, not half way through.....

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