Rights group video: Israeli soldier shot fleeing Palestinian

AP News
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Posted: Jul 12, 2015 1:37 PM

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — An Israeli human rights group released a video Sunday that purports to show a high-ranking Israeli officer fatally shooting a fleeing Palestinian teenager who had thrown a rock at his vehicle, smashing its windshield.

The surveillance camera footage appears to undercut earlier claims by the military that the officer, Col. Israel Shomer, a brigade commander, opened fire on July 3 because his life was in danger.

The video released by the B'Tselem rights group shows a Palestinian rushing at the vehicle, throwing an object at the windshield and running away. The vehicle then stops, a soldier jumps out, aims his gun and charges. The soldier's face cannot be seen clearly and the video has no sound.

The military earlier said that Shomer had exhausted "all measures" before firing at 17-year-old Mohammed al-Kusbah and released pictures of the vehicle's smashed windshield. On Sunday, the Israeli military said it was still investigating the shooting and declined to comment further.

Palestinian Hospital physician Samer Saliba said at the time that al-Kusbah was shot in the face and back.

B'Tselem said the footage makes the military's earlier explanation "unreasonable" and called the killing "unlawful."

Thaer al-Kusbah, the brother of the teen killed, said the officer could have apprehended him rather than shooting him dead.

"It's clear that Mohammed threw a stone, and the officer came out of the car. He could have arrested him, he could have shot him in the leg, but he wanted to kill him," al-Kusbah said.