Soldiers Let Palestinian Prisoner Assault Ramallah Lyncher

Amos Harel
Amos Harel
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The Palestinian man infamous for showing his bloodstained hands at the window of an El Bireh police station where a mob of Palestinians lynched two soldiers at the beginning of the intifada, was nearly beaten to death, with the compliance of IDF soldiers, by a fellow Palestinian while the two were detained in the Beit El military court's holding cell.

Abdel Aziz Salah, 21, was arrested by the Shin Bet last June as part of the security services' efforts to detain all those who participated in the murders of two reservists who got lost near Ramallah in October 2000. More than 15 Palestinians have been arrested in this case and most have been charged.

During his interrogation, Salah apparently provided interrogators with information about his involvement in stealing cars that were booby-trapped with bombs by a Palestinian terror cell, later broken up by the Shin Bet. A member of that cell, from the Ramallah area, saw Salah at the Beit El military court when both were held on separate legal matters.

According to sources, the Ramallah man, who suspected Salah had informed on him, asked the soldiers guarding Salah to let him have "just two minutes alone" with the lyncher. The soldiers agreed. When Salah asked to go to the bathroom, he was taken there alone, still handcuffed and shackled. Then the Ramallah man, who was not handcuffed, also was let into the bathroom. The two were alone for a few minutes, until the noise drew other soldiers. According to the army sources, they found the Ramallah man sitting on top of Salah, beating him and trying to break his neck. The soldiers then pulled him off Salah.

The incident was apparently not reported to IDF authorities. The IDF Spokesman said Monday that the IDF was not aware of the incident.