Mideast Report

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JERUSALEM (JTA) — An Israeli received a heart transplant Tuesday from a Palestinian man recently shot dead in disputed circumstances near Jerusalem.

The coordinator of Israel's national transplant association said it was the first organ donation by a Palestinian since the outbreak of violence last September. The family of Mazen Juliani claims he was shot by an Israeli settler, but Israeli police say the man was killed in a dispute with another Palestinian.

The family decided to donate Juliani's organs, saving five lives, including that of Israeli Yigal Cohen, who would have died without a heart transplant.

Israeli media quoted Juliani's father as saying he would donate the organs if it "saved lives, Jews or Muslims."

Cohen's father David told Israeli Radio, "This is a noble act that really, really touched us. We were very surprised…to find out the identity of the donor."