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Israeli policemen near the place where the body of the Israeli soldier was found in the West Bank, August 8, 2019. REUTERS / Ammar Awad

An 18-year-old Israeli boy who had just started his military service was stabbed to death in the West Bank. This creates a strong emotion in Israel and in the settlements. Investigations by the perpetrators of the attack are continuing in Palestinian villages in the area.

with our correspondent in Jerusalem, Michel Paul

For the spokesman of the Israeli army, there is no possible doubt: " This is a terrorist attack ." According to preliminary reports, the young Talmudic student was kidnapped in the middle of the night while on his way to Jerusalem.

He had just enlisted in the army, but had not yet begun his training period. The police were alerted in the middle of the night of his disappearance and the army launched a large manhunt throughout the area. The body of the young soldier was discovered hours later in a ditch by the side of the road.

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The incident comes 40 days before the Israeli parliamentary elections and is already exploited in the election campaign. Several deputies claim the death penalty for the perpetrators of the attack. Others propose a military reaction.

Five years ago, the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in the same area sparked the " Protective Edge " operation in Gaza, which killed 1,843 Palestinians.