Zada Finally Buried; His Death Will be Investigated

Eden Natan Zada, the soldier who shot and killed four Israeli-Arabs on a bus in the Galilee town of Shfar'am on Thursday, was buried in a civilian ceremony in Rishon LeTzion today.

Hillel Fendel, | updated: 16:34

The funeral was held in Zada's hometown, ending almost three days of controversy over where to bury him.

The army had originallly agreed to bury him in a semi-military ceremony on Friday, but shortly before the funeral was to begin, Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz, responding to pressures, vetoed the idea.

Later, Meir Nitzan, the mayor of Rishon LeTzion, announced that he would not permit the burial in the city's cemetery - despite the automatic right of every city citizen to be buried in his town.

This morning, the Prime Minister's Bureau overruled Nitzan and decreed that Zada should be buried in Rishon LeTzion.

Zada's parents had made personal pleas to both Mofaz and Nitzan, asking that their son be treated like a "person." They had been considering petitioning to the Supreme Court against the delay in his burial. Nitzan, in finally agreeing to bury Zada in his city, said that the murderer's father had "threatened" him.

Public Security Minister Gideon Ezra said that he would investigate the circumstances of Zada's death. "When a mob falls upon a man who is already neutralized and handcuffed, this is something of utmost gravity," Ezra said, "and it will be investigated." He also said that those in the mob who attacked policemen will be investigated.

Zada was killed by the Arabs on the bus in what was described as a lynching. Arab spokespersons said that the killing was done in self-defense, but Channel Ten has footage showing that Zada was unarmed when he was killed. The clips also show that two policemen were on the bus when the soldier was murdered.