Photo: B'Tselem
Footage of the incident
Photo: B'Tselem

Soldiers: We didn't know Jericho terrorist was wounded from shooting

Nine soldiers seen in CCTV footage kicking and striking Yassin Omar al-Saradih with their weapons after he attacked them and was shot say they were operating in the dark and could not see the terrorist was bleeding.

The nine soldiers seen in CCTV footage beating a Palestinian attacker in Jericho after he was shot and wounded have insisted they did not know he was hit when they were overpowering him.



A video released by the B'Tselem NGO on Wednesday shows Yassin Omar al-Saradih running towards a group of soldiers while brandishing a large object with three prongs or legs. A squad commander from the Lion of the Valley Battalion shot Saradih in his lower extremity and the attacker fell to the ground.


The footage then shows the commander along with other soldiers kicking and striking Saradih with their weapons. Later in the video they are seen dragging him into a nearby alley and apparently leaving him there for 25 minutes before picking him up by the arms and legs and putting him in an army jeep.


Footage of the incident    (באדיבות "בצלם")

Footage of the incident   (Video: B'Tselem)


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תמונה חדשה

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 קוד להטמעה:


Saradih was killed in the Thursday incident, and an autopsy conducted by the Institute of Forensic Medicine the next day determined he died as a result of the gunshot wound.


A source close to the soldiers involved in the incident said that "there was surprise in the army when on Friday the autopsy results revealed the Palestinian died from the shooting."


The IDF's Criminal Investigation Division (CID) launched an investigation into the incident, questioning the squad commander who shot the terrorist as well as a medic who examined him in the field and the platoon commander.


 (Photos: B'Tselem)
(Photos: B'Tselem)


Several of the other soldiers involved were also questioned, telling the CID that they were "operating in complete darkness and in complex operational conditions, in the middle of an arrest raid, while nearby (Palestinians) were throwing stones and Molotov cocktails" at them. They stressed that they "didn't notice any bleeding on his body."


The soldiers also asserted the video shows the Palestinian tried to pull on the legs of one of them and attempted to snatch the squad commander's weapon.


They further claimed the deterioration in Saradih's condition was a result of the beating he received from them and the tear gas he inhaled during the violent rioting ongoing nearby.


IDF officials said it is likely professional flaws would be found in the force's conduct, particularly because two different medics failed to identify the gunshot wound when examining Saradih in the field.


So far, the investigation's findings support the squad commander's version, who said he felt in danger when the Palestinian continued running towards him with a large object even after being ordered to stop. The fact a knife was found in Saradih's possession further bolsters the squad commander's version.


The company commander, who was not in the field on the night of the incident, provided his own testimony to the CID on Wednesday about his company's operations in the Jordan Valley in an effort to determine whether there were shortcomings in the preparations and briefings done before the soldiers went on their mission.


The battalion commander, Lt. Col. Nir Doft, might also be asked to testify.


"You don't have to be smart in hindsight," a source close to the soldiers said. "Even if there is criticism of their professional conduct, they operated within the legitimate limits under these circumstances."


The IDF Spokesman's Office said that "following the incident, and since the terrorist had died while he was already under arrest by IDF forces, a CID investigation has been launched to examine the circumstances behind his death. An autopsy was also carried out. At the same time, the full operational investigation of the incident continues."



פרסום ראשון: 02.28.18, 22:31
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