two arrested in israel for threatening judges who convicted soldier
Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
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Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
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Two arrested in Israel for threatening judges who convicted soldier

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Arab Today, arab today Two arrested in Israel for threatening judges who convicted soldier

Mothers of the arrested people holding their pictures
JERUSALEM - Arab Today

Israeli police said on Thursday they arrested two people for inciting violence on social media against three military judges who convicted a soldier of manslaughter over his fatal shooting of a wounded Palestinian attacker.
The judges found Sergeant Elor Azaria, 20, guilty of the charge on Wednesday, and supporters have set up several Facebook pages urging Israel’s president to pardon him.
The case has polarized Israel. A military security detail was assigned to the judges on Wednesday, when several hundred far-right supporters of Azaria clashed with police outside the Tel Aviv military base as the verdict was being read out.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said officers had arrested a man in Jerusalem and a woman in the southern town of Kiryat Gat whose social media comments constituted “incitement to violence” against the judges.
Ten months ago, Azaria was an army medic serving in the city of Hebron, in the occupied West Bank, when two Palestinians stabbed a fellow soldier.
One of the assailants was shot dead by troops. The other, Abdel Fattah Al-Sharif, 21, was wounded and lay on the ground incapacitated when more than 10 minutes after the attack Azaria shot him in the head with an assault rifle.
Azaria faces up to 20 years in prison, although legal experts expect a much lighter term. Sentencing is expected in the coming weeks.
The trial has generated debate about whether the military is was out of touch with a public that has shifted to the right in its attitudes toward the Palestinians.
A poll published on Wednesday by Israel’s Channel 2 television showed that 67 percent of respondents favor a pardon for Azaria. Many right-leaning politicians advocate the same.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for a pardon for the soldier.
Reacting to the conviction, Netanyahu called for the 20-year-old French-Israeli sergeant to be pardoned. “This has been a hard and painful day for us all — first and foremost for Elor and his family,” Netanyahu wrote on Facebook.
“I support giving a pardon to Elor Azaria.”
Netanyahu made waves before the trial even began by calling Azaria’s father to express his sympathy.
President Reuven Rivlin’s office had earlier said any talk of a pardon was premature and that an application could only be made after the judicial process had run its course.
No date has yet been announced for sentencing, and Azaria could then appeal.
Judge Col. Maya Heller spent more than two and a half hours reading out the court decision, criticizing the arguments of Azaria’s lawyers.
On behalf of the three-judge panel, Heller said there was no reason for Azaria to open fire since the Palestinian was posing no threat.
She called his testimony “evolving and evasive.”
“His motive for shooting was that he felt the terrorist deserved to die,” she said.
Azaria had entered the courtroom smiling, applauded by family and supporters.
But he looked shaken as the judge spoke, and after the verdict his mother yelled: “You should be ashamed of yourselves.”
Outside Israel’s military headquarters in Tel Aviv, where the court announced the verdict, dozens of Azaria supporters scuffled with police.
Shabtay Oz, a retired policeman carrying a large Israeli flag, said he never imagined himself joining a demonstration.
“But when I saw a soldier in cuffs after he shot a terrorist... that was the point of no return.”
The March 24 shooting in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron was caught on video and spread widely online.
It showed Al-Sharif, 21, lying on the ground, shot along with another Palestinian after stabbing and wounding a soldier, according to the army.
Azaria then shoots him again in the head without any apparent provocation.
The Palestinian’s father told reporters in Hebron after the verdict that Azaria should be sentenced to life.
“For me, a just verdict will be one that is similar to the verdicts our sons (in Israeli prisons) get,” Yusri Al-Sharif said.
The video was filmed by a Palestinian volunteer for Israeli rights group B’Tselem.
“The fact that one soldier was convicted today does not exonerate the Israeli military law enforcement system from its routine whitewashing of cases in which security forces kill or injure Palestinians with no accountability,” B’Tselem said after the verdict.
The case had been portrayed by some as a test of whether Israel’s military could prosecute one of its own, though many Palestinians argued Azaria was only put on trial because of the video.
The military has said it began investigating before the video’s release. The last time an Israeli soldier was convicted of manslaughter was in 2005, Israeli media reported.

source:Arab News

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two arrested in israel for threatening judges who convicted soldier two arrested in israel for threatening judges who convicted soldier

 



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