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Thousands join funeral of Palestinian citizen of Israel killed in Istanbul attack

Jan. 3, 2017 4:32 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 3, 2017 6:01 P.M.)
TIRA (Ma'an) -- Thousands of mourners in the city of Tira in central Israel joined a funeral procession Tuesday for 19-year-old Leanne Zahir Nasser, a Palestinian citizen of Israel who was killed in a shooting attack at a New Year’s Eve party in an Istanbul nightclub, which left 38 others dead and dozens injured.

Mourners carried Leanne's body from her home to the Omar Ibn al-Khattab mosque in the town shortly before midday. After the funeral prayer, the body was carried to an Islamic cemetery, where the young woman was laid to rest.

Footage from Israeli media reports showed family members weeping in anguish as they moved through the funeral procession.

People close to the family said the mother cried out in disbelief: “Where is my precious daughter, how can I go on in life without her? Leanne, wake up, even for a minute so that I can hug you and tell you that I love you so much. I want to hear your voice which I miss for just a few seconds. Why did they murder you?"

Among the funeral attendees were members the Joint List of Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, Ayman Odeh, Ahmad Tibi, and Jamal Zahalqa, in addition to former Knesset members Afou Aghbariya, Talab al-Sanaa, and Muhammad Baraka.

Mamun Abd al-Hay, the mayor of Tira, declared Tuesday a day of mourning "to support the bereaved family and to send an obvious message to the world that we are against terrorism."
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