Central Command: IDF Innocent in Abu Ein's Death

Investigation finds IDF not liable for terrorist-turned-PA minister's heart attack; IDF to continue investigation due to 'sensitivity.'

Ari Yashar ,

Ziad Abu Ein in previous clash.
Ziad Abu Ein in previous clash.
Reuters

An investigation by the IDF GOC (General Officer Commanding) Central Command Nitzan Alon has further cleared the army of any responsibility for the death of convicted terrorist turned Palestinian Authority (PA) minister Ziad Abu Ein, who died last month of a heart attack while clashing with soldiers.

Channel 10 reports that the GOC Central Command investigation has also cleared the Border Patrol soldier who was filmed pushing Abu Ein as he took part in an olive-planting land grab with 300 activists. 

According to the IDF investigation, throughout all segments of the incident the soldiers acted as required, and accusations of firing gas to disperse the activists in an improper manner were disproved. 

However, the report added that Abu Ein's death will likely continue to be investigated in the IDF's Criminal Investigation Division (CID) due to the "sensitivity of the issue."

Abu Ein, who had a long history of health conditions, died during the riot leading the PA to quickly blame Israel of "murdering" him, going on to threaten to cancel security cooperation in Judea and Samaria which the PA later backed down on.

Those accusations of "murder" were thoroughly debunked as video of the event showed he was not struck, and that an IDF female medic even offered him medical care which he refused.

The investigation findings were partially leaked last month by a Border Patrol officer, who noted the investigation cleared the IDF of accusations of irresponsibility in Abu Ein's death. 

The report found unequivocally that Abu Ein provoked IDF officers - taunting them and cursing them to their faces - before rejecting medical assistance that could have saved his life.

The PA's "terror minister"

After being extradited from the US, Abu Ein was given a life sentence in 1982 for murdering two Israelis - Boaz Lahav (14) and David Lankri (16) hy''d - in Tiberias in 1979 by planting explosives in a store. He never served his sentence, being released in the Ahmed Jibril prisoner swap deal in 1985 just three years later. 

Most recently he held a post leading the PA committee against "settlements," after previously being the PA Deputy Minister of Prisoners' Affairs where he channeled funds to jailed Arab terrorists, until the PA shifted the ministry's responsibility to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to hide the funding of terrorism from foreign donors.

An autopsy from the Abu Dis Forensics Institute revealed Abu Ein suffered from existing medical conditions and died of a heart attack.

The autopsy noted "the deceased suffered from ischemic heart disease; blood vessels in his heart were found to be over 80% blocked by plaque. Old scars indicating that he suffered from previous myocardial infractions were also found."

Nevertheless, former MK and primaries contender in the radical leftist Meretz party Mossi Raz, who also is the former secretary general of Peace Now, paid a condolence visit in Ramallah last month at Abu Ein's home.

"Confronted with the sorrow of the family I said we will know (how) to bring an end to the occupation and the enmity between the peoples," said Raz.



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