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Palestinian who died in Israeli custody gets hero’s funeral

SAEER, West Bank — A Palestinian man who died under disputed circumstances in Israeli­ custody was given a ­hero’s funeral Monday as thousands thronged his gravesite and Palestinian police fired a gun salute.

Palestinian officials, citing an autopsy, said Arafat Jaradat was tortured. Israeli officials said more tests are needed to determine the cause of death, and Israel’s public security minister said he would allow an international expert to review the autopsy results.

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The weekend death of the 30-year-old gas station attendant and father of two came amid rising West Bank tensions that have prompted talk in Israel about the possibility of a new Palestinian uprising.

The office of Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, said Monday he was consulting with security officials, while United Nations envoy Robert Serry warned that ‘‘mounting tensions present a real risk of destabilization.’’

In recent days, there have been frequent Palestinian protests in support of some 4,600 Palestinians held by Israel, particularly four inmates who have staged extended hunger strikes.

Palestinian medical officials said two Palestinian youths, one 13 and one 16, were seriously wounded by live fire in a clash on Monday.

An Israeli military spokesman said the military was looking into the claim. He said protesters hurled ‘‘improvised hand grenades’’ toward a holy site in the Bethlehem area, endangering worshipers, at which point soldiers fired at the legs of a Palestinian, lightly injuring him.

Israel’s military has said it typically uses nonlethal means to disperse violent protests but occasionally uses live fire when soldiers feel they are in a life-threatening situation. Palestinians have increasingly complained of the military’s use of live fire at protests.

Palestinian and Israeli officials traded accusations Monday, each saying the other was trying to exploit the latest unrest for political gains.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Israel is trying to provoke Palestinians with increasingly lethal methods used by security forces.

Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev alleged that Abbas’s self-rule government in the West Bank is inciting violence against Israel. Palestinian officials have called for more solidarity rallies.

Abbas has said he would not allow an armed uprising. But tensions have been rising in recent days.

At Monday’s funeral, thousands marched behind Jaradat’s body as the procession snaked through his home town of Saeer.

Abbas Zaki, a senior member of Abbas’s Fatah movement, called Jaradat’s death an Israeli crime. ‘‘I am telling Fatah members that our enemy only understands the language of force,’’ he told the crowd.

Jaradat was arrested on Feb. 18 on suspicion he had thrown stones at Israelis. He died Saturday after several days of interrogation. Jaradat’s brother, Mohammed, said he saw the body and believed his brother was severely beaten.

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