UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, has issued a statement regarding Israeli search operations in the West Bank:“The Special Coordinator is deeply concerned by reports that Israeli security operations in the West Bank since the abduction of three Israeli students have resulted in the arrest of over 300 Palestinians, the injury of many, and the killing of three Palestinians, including one minor this morning,” he said Friday.

Serry called on the Israeli government to exercise ‘restraint’ and to carry out the related ‘security operations’ in compliance with international law and respect for the lives, dignity and livelihoods of Palestinians, according to WAFA Palestinian News & Info Agency.

“It should thus seek to minimize the impact of security operations on individuals who have committed no offense and investigate allegations of excessive use of force, including the killing of civilians.”

He concluded his statement by calling all sides to exercise ‘restraint’ in these ‘dramatic circumstances’.

According to Serry, without such restraint, “it will become even more difficult to address an already critical security situation on the ground.”

A spokesperson for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said, recently, that the UN has no concrete evidence that the three Israelis were taken captive, explaining that the organization does not have an independent investigation team that can confirm such an abduction ever took place.

Contrary to this statement, Ki-moon has also condemned the incident as an ‘abduction’, along with several other officials and rights organizations who have been quick to speak of the incident as a kidnapping, despite the lack of any solid evidence upon which to do so.