Hebron's Civilian Security Chief Notified Army About Killing of Wounded Palestinian

According to a senior officer, commanders at the scene did not immediately grasp what was going on when Abdel Fattah al-Sharif was shot.

Chaim Levinson
Chaim Levinson
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Scene from a video released on March 24, 2016 by B'Tselem showing IDF Sgt. Elor Azaria  aiming his weapon before shooting in the head and killing a wounded Palestinian assailant in Hebron.
Scene from a video released on March 24, 2016 by B'Tselem showing IDF Sgt. Elor Azaria aiming his weapon before shooting in the head and killing a wounded Palestinian assailant in Hebron.Credit: AFP
Chaim Levinson
Chaim Levinson

The security coordinator of Hebron’s Jewish community is the person who informed the local battalion chief that a soldier had shot a Palestinian assailant already wounded on the ground, a senior officer in Central Command told reporters.

According to the senior officer, commanders at the scene did not immediately grasp what was going on when Sgt. Elor Azaria shot Abdel Fattah al-Sharif.

The officer said the security coordinator was at the scene of the March 24 shooting and reported it to the commander, Gen. Yariv Ben Ezra. Azaria has since been charged with manslaughter.

The officer said details from the investigation had been discussed with soldiers, “and they understand” its lessons.

This week, Channel 10 News reported that Ben Ezra had told soldiers that Azaria’s life was not in danger at the time of the shooting, which endangered his comrades as well.

“The shooting was the most dangerous thing there – notice that in the film he was shooting past all the soldiers,” the officer said.

In his talk, Ben Ezra also attacked what he called “the interference by politicians and rabbis in open-fire orders.”

Regarding the overall security situation, Ben Ezra reportedly told the soldiers: “We expect the escalation to return. It hasn’t disappeared.”

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