A Border Guard officer suspected of killing of an 11-year-old Palestinian boy during an anti-fence rally held in Naalin last week has been placed under house arrest and suspended from all operational activities until the conclusion of the investigation against him, Ynet learned on Sunday.
Police said the suspect was arrested last week following an investigation launched by Brigadier-General Shlomi Even-Paz, who heads the Border Guard Command in Judea and Samaria. The officer was interrogated and then placed under five-day house arrest over the weekend, police said.
According to Naalin’s Anti-Fence Committee, Ahmed Moussa was shot by a Border Guard officer from 30 meters (about 98 feet) away while he was sitting with friends under an olive tree near the security fence's construction site in the West Bank village.
Committee member Ibrahim Khawaja told Ynet that the slain boy's friends said an Israeli jeep, apparently belonging to the Border Guard, suddenly pulled up in front of them, at which point one of the officers stepped out of the vehicle and opened fire towards the group, hitting Moussa in the head.
The boy died of his wounds a short while later. Palestinian officials said on Wednesday that an autopsy performed by Palestinian forensic doctors indicated that Moussa was shot by live fire.
'Moral and authoritative failure'
Ramallah Governor Said Abu Ali said the autopsy indicated that the boy was struck by a single bullet from an M16 assault rifle that entered his forehead and exited the back of his head.
Israel sought to do a joint autopsy with the Palestinians either in Israel or in the West Bank, but Palestinian officials refused, Ali said.
Residents of Naalin protest almost daily against Israel's separation barrier, and demonstrations frequently turn into confrontations between stone-throwing youths and Israeli troops firing tear gas and rubber-coated bullets.
Meanwhile, the Military Advocate General is continuing the investigation into the incident in which an IDF soldier shot a bound Palestinian in the foot with a rubber bullet during another anti-fence rally in Naalin.
The probe was launched after a video of the shooting circulated by B'Tselem was aired first by Ynet. The commanding officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Omri, was ordered by Northern Command Chief Major-General Gadi Eisenkot to go on a 10-day leave of absence.
Major-General Eisenkot noted that the incident indicated a severe lapse in judgment and a "moral and authoritative failure" on the commander's part.
The Lt. Col. continues to maintain that the soldier acted independently, however Ynet has learned that he recently failed the polygraph test he was subjected to.