The State is responsible for the death of 10-year-old Palestinian girl Abir Aramin in 2007 and will compensate her family, the Jerusalem District Court ruled Monday.
The court determined that the girl was killed by a stray rubber bullet fired by a Border Guard officer. According to the ruling, the shooting was the result of the State's negligence.
In addition to the civil suit, the girl's family filed an appeal with the High Court of Justice, demanding that the Israeli fighters be put on trial, this after the State Prosecutor's Office closed the case against them.
Ruling based on friends' testimonies (Photo: AP)
Judge Orit Efal-Gabai said in her ruling that there was no dispute that the shooting, which occurred in the West Bank village of Anata, was conducted in violation of the rules of engagement.
"The shooting did not target rioters or stone-throwers. Abir and her friends were walking down a street from which no stones were thrown at Border Guard forces. There was no apparent reason to fire in that direction," according to the ruling.
The lawsuit, which was filed by Attorney Lea Tsemel on behalf of Abir's parents in July 2007, demanded financial compensation for the family.
Judge Efal-Gabai further ruled that another hearing will be held in October to determine the amount of damages.
The ruling was based on the testimonies of Abir's friends. "They went through a very difficult experience and witnessed her (Abir's) injury," said the judge, adding that the State's version of the events, according to which Abir was hit by a stone and not a rubber bullet, was "unlikely."
Following Abir's death, her family presented a pathological report which determined that she was struck by a rubber bullet. However, Israel Police said an autopsy showed she was not killed by a rubber bullet.
Human rights group Yesh Din and Bassam Aramin, Abir's father, filed a High Court petition against the attorney general and two Border Guard officers, demanding that the officers be prosecuted.
Following the appeal, the State Prosecution announced that the girl's death would be investigated further.
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