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Court Order Hamas to Pay Survivors of Elon Moreh Massacre

A Jerusalem District Court has ordered the Hamas terror organization to pay close to 100 million shekels to the survivors of a family massacred by the Hamas in the town of Elon Moreh in March 2002.
By Scott Shiloh
First Publish: 1/22/2006, 5:43 PM / Last Update: 1/22/2006, 6:43 PM

Though mostly symbolic - the Hamas does not hold money or property in Israel - the ruling reflects a growing legal trend to hold terrorist groups financially accountable for the lives they destroy. American courts have recently ordered terror groups to pay millions of dollars to American citizens victimized by terrorists in Israel.

The attack in Elon Moreh occurred when a Hamas terrorist entered the home of the Gavish family, gunning down the parents, Rachel and David, and their son, Avraham, 25. Avraham was home on leave from an elite army unit. Rachel’s father, Yitzhak Kanner, 74, was also shot and killed in the attack.

The court ordered the Hamas to pay 10 million shekels to each of the family’s survivors, plus sums to cover lawyers fees and court expenses.

The plaintiffs in the case are the pair’s six remaining children, Avraham’s widow, Na’ama Gavish and her daughter, and Kanner’s son, Moshe.

Na’ama survived the attack by hiding under a table with her daughter. While holding her daughter’s mouth shut, she waited for the terrorist to go up to the second floor. She then fled the house, saving her life and that of her daughter. Na’ama is the daughter of Kedumim mayor and Yesha activist Daniella Weiss.

The Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack.

In his ruling, Judge Aharon Farkash held that the attack was carried out with the explicit intention of “killing the victims and harming their families, and there is no other explanation for this act. The act was prompted by intense hate that caused the victim’s deaths and the difficult trauma experienced by the plaintiffs.”

The court held that while the amount claimed by the plaintiffs was suitable, it could never “dull the pain of the survivors who must continue living with a trauma that will accompany them to the end of their lives.”