Video raises questions about Israeli police shooting
JERUSALEM // New amateur video of a deadly police shooting in east Jerusalem raised questions on Wednesday about the police version of events.
Police initially said the Palestinian driver had tried to run over their forces in Jerusalem’s Shuafat refugee camp before police shot at the car earlier this week. But the amateur video, aired on Channel 10 TV, appeared to show police shooting after the vehicle had been stopped, suggesting it no longer posed a threat.
The driver, Ali Nimr, was wounded and arrested, while the passenger – his brother-in-law Mustafa Nimr – was fatally shot.
There were no casualties among the officers.
On Wednesday, police spokeswoman Luba Samri said they were investigating Ali, the 20-year-old driver of the car, for manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, driving without a licence, driving under the influence of alcohol and reckless endangerment. The manslaughter investigation indicated police were holding him responsible for the death of his cousin.
The video of the incident appeared to show shots being fired after the car was stopped, with Mustafa already on the ground either wounded or dead.
The two men were returning to the camp after buying pizzas, a witness told Channel 10 on condition of anonymity.
Haaretz newspaper reported that Mustafa Nimr’s Jewish girlfriend and his brother were following them in a second vehicle.
It said Mustafa Nimr grew up in Shuafat but was living in the Tel Aviv area at the time with his girlfriend.
Witnesses told Haaretz as saying the car did not endanger police and they were racing at the time.
The border police who opened fire had been in the camp for a separate raid, authorities said. Police carry out such raids regularly in search of weapons or wanted suspects.
The Shuafat incident was the latest in a wave of violence that has taken place over the past year.
In June, Israeli troops killed a Palestinian teenager after apparently mistaking his group for stone-throwers as they returned from a swim, sparking outrage and debate about the security forces’ use of firearms.
Violence since October has killed 223 Palestinians, most of them identified as attackers by Israel. Palestinians have allegedly killed 34 Israelis and two visiting Americans in attacks.
Palestinians have frequently accused Israelis of using excessive force against assailants and said in many cases, alleged assailants were not even attackers.
In the most high-profile case, an Israeli soldier is on trial on charges of manslaughter after he was filmed fatally shooting a wounded Palestinian attacker in the West Bank city of Hebron in March. The soldier, Sgt Elor Azaria, has argued that the attacker still posed a threat at the time.
* Associated Press and Agence France-Presse
Published: September 7, 2016 04:00 AM