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Jewish Extremist Settler Convicted in Murders

A West Bank settler dubbed “The Jewish Terrorist” by the Israeli media was convicted on Wednesday of killing two Palestinians in 1997.

Yaakov “Jack” Tytell, a U.S. immigrant to a settlement in the occupied West Bank, confessed to the killings. Efforts by his lawyers, one whom quoted him as saying he had been on a “mission from God”, to have him declared insane failed.

The court convicted him of murdering a Palestinian taxi driver in Jerusalem and a shepherd in the West Bank city of Hebron, while visiting Israel as a tourist in 1997.

Tytell moved to Israel 12 years ago and in 2008 planted bombs that injured a left-wing Israeli academic and a teenager who belonged to a group of Jews who follow the teachings of Jesus.

He admitted to the series of attacks, and flashed a V-for-Victory sign at the hearing, where sentencing was set for next month.

After Tytell’s arrest in 2009, he told investigators he had acted alone and was not part of any anti-Arab Jewish underground. He was detained by police while hanging posters in Jerusalem praising a still-unsolved shooting that year that killed two people at a community centre for gay youngsters in Tel Aviv.

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