JERUSALEM — Israeli police discovered the body of an American woman, hands bound and full of stab wounds, in a rugged forest outside Jerusalem on Sunday, a day after a friend said Arab assailants attacked the pair during a hike in the hills.
The friend, who suffered light wounds but managed to escape, said one of the two attackers approached them with what looked like a long bread knife and carefully removed her Star of David necklace before stabbing her where it had hung.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said authorities were treating the attack as political in nature, while not ruling out that it could have been criminal. Police said there were no signs that the wounded women had been sexually assaulted or robbed.
Rosenfeld identified the slain woman as Christine Logan, a 40-year-old American tourist. Her hometown was not released.
Logan's friend, Kaye Susan Wilson, reported Logan missing Saturday after the two were attacked in a forest near the Jewish farming community of Mata, some 12 miles southwest of Jerusalem. The forest is close to the border with the West Bank.
Wilson, a naturalized Israeli citizen originally from Britain, managed to escape, although covered in blood and with her hands bound behind her back.
• Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas held a rare meeting with dozens of Israeli lawmakers, ex-generals and peace activists, urging them to tell the Israeli public he opposes violence and is committed to reaching a peace deal. The outreach, at Abbas' West Bank headquarters, appeared aimed at generating domestic pressure on Israel's hardline prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, at a time when U.S.-led peace efforts seem hopelessly bogged down.
• Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak blamed Israel for the stalemate in peace negotiations with the Palestinians in a speech before a joint session of the Egyptian parliament's two chambers. Mubarak also warned Israel that the security of its people hinged on peace rather than "occupation or arms." Mubarak, whose country has a 1979 peace treaty with Israel, also called on the United States and other Mideast peace brokers to "assume their responsibility" to break the stalemate in the peace process, lamenting that international efforts had fallen well short of what was needed.