Man jailed for Kikos murder won't agree to early release unless acquitted

Suleiman Abeid, the Beduin man jailed for the 1993 rape and murder of Hanit Kikos, will not agree to an early release unless he is completely acquitted. "He [Abeid] told me not once, not twice. [That he is] prepared to rot in jail until they say: 'Suleiman Abeid is innocent,'" his brother told Army Radio on Monday. On Sunday, Channel Two reported that Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann was expected to cut Abeid's sentence by a third. Seventeen-year-old Kikos was last seen on June 10, 1993, trying to hitch a ride from her home town of Ofakim to nearby Beersheba, where she planned to attend her boyfriend's birthday party. Although Hanit's body wasn't found until June 1995, Abeid was arrested eight days after her disappearance. He was convicted of raping and murdering Hanit in November 1994 and sentenced to life imprisonment but has maintained his innocence since, despite his initial confessions. Hanit's parents also have doubts about Abeid's guilt.