Soldier convicted for killing 15-year-old demonstrator
An Israeli military court has convicted a soldier for killing a Palestinian, who climbed over the border fence between Israel and Gaza during a March of Return demonstration in July, the army said in a statement.
This is the first time an Israeli soldier has been convicted over the killing of a Palestinian involved in the weekly anti-Israel demonstrations, a spokesman for Jerusalem-based human rights organization B’Tselem told dpa Wednesday.
According to the al-Mizan Centre for Human Rights in Gaza City, the Palestinian was 15 years old.
A statement issued Tuesday by the army said the solider was convicted on Monday as part of a plea bargain for acting without authorisation in a manner endangering life and well-being.
According to the verdict, during a violent riot, the soldier fired at a Palestinian rioter who was climbing on the security fence between Israel and the Gaza Strip without receiving the required authorisation from his commanders.
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The soldier fired not in accordance with the rules of engagement and not in accordance with the instructions he had received, it added.
The court sentenced the soldier to 30 days of imprisonment and 60 additional days of imprisonment on probation. Also, the soldier was demoted to the rank of Private.
Hamas spokesman Abdulatif al-Qanou’a told dpa that the Palestinian teen wasn’t armed and didn’t represent any danger to the life of the soldier.
Israel, he said, must be sued in international courts for committing war crimes against humanity.
According to the Gaza Health Ministry, 313 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more injured in clashes with Israeli soldiers since the end of March 2018.