- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 28, 2014

A body found in a Jerusalem-area forest is that of American citizen Aaron Sofer, Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said Thursday, CNN reported.

Sofer, a 23-year-old ultra-Orthodox student at a yeshiva, disappeared Friday as he was hiking with a friend in the Jerusalem Forest.

No other immediate details were available.

Sofer’s parents, who live in Lakewood, New Jersey, flew to Israel over the weekend as police continued an extensive search for the American.

New Jersey lawmakers called Monday for more help from the U.S. and Israeli governments in the search for Sofer.

“This area is bordered by Jewish communities and by Arab communities, so it is very concerning,” said Lakewood Council member Meir Lichtenstein.

There have been several prayer vigils in the tight-knit community of Lakewood since news of the man’s disappearance.

War broke out between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip on July 8, stemming from the abduction and killing of three Israeli teens by Hamas operatives in June.