- The Washington Times - Monday, June 30, 2014

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the Hamas militant group will pay a heavy price for the deaths of three Israeli teenagers whose bodies were found Monday.

Hamas is responsible, and Hamas will pay,” the prime minister said in a statement, adding that the teenagers “were kidnapped and murdered in cold blood by wild beasts,” The Associated Press reported.

Israel announced late Monday that the bodies of Gilad Shaar, 16; Naftali Frenkel, 16; and Eyal Yifrach, 19 were found in the Palestinian city of Hebron.

Israel accused Hamas of being behind the abduction and military forces have conducted raids and arrested hundreds of Palestinians in the search for the teens.

Palestinian officials agreed that the abductors were likely tied to Hamas but operating without orders from the organization’s leadership, ABC News reported.

The White House was asked to comment on the news of the deaths, which broke in the middle of the briefing.

SEE ALSO: Little girl recites poem on Hamas TV: “I shall buy a bullet, at any price’

“We obviously condemn, in the strongest possible term, violence that takes the lives of innocent civilians,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest, ABC News reported. “But I don’t want to react any further without having a chance to take a look at that report myself.”

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