'Please Mr. President, pardon Elor'

Despite President Rivlin's refusal to grant clemency request to Elor Azariya, family of jailed soldier urge president to reconsider.

David Rosenberg,

Elor Azariya sits with his family at his trial
Elor Azariya sits with his family at his trial
Miriam Alster/Flash 90

The parents of a former IDF soldier convicted of manslaughter in the shooting death of a wounded Arab terrorist in March 2016 appealed to President Reuven Rivlin, urging him to reconsider his decision to deny the soldier’s request for a presidential pardon.

Former IDF Sergeant Elor Azariya was convicted of manslaughter in January for the shooting death of a wounded Arab terrorist minutes after the terrorist perpetrated an attack in Hevron that left one soldier wounded.

In February, an IDF court sentenced Azariya to 18 months in prison, a ruling that was upheld by the IDF Court of Appeals in July.

In September, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot slashed four months off Azariya's sentence.

In October, Azariya submitted an appeal to President Rivlin asking for a full pardon.

On November 19th, President Rivlin denied the pardon request, writing that any additional leniency in the case “would harm the resilience to the Israel Defense Forces and the State of Israel.”

Nevertheless, on Sunday Elor’s parents, Charlie and Oshra Azariya, submitted another pardon request on their son’s behalf, urging the president to reconsider his November 19th decision.

In the letter, the Azariya family notes that 55 Knesset members and ministers have backed the campaign to secure a pardon for the former soldier, including Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

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