Officer admits suspicion that terrorist had bomb

The platoon commander who was with soldier that shot neutralized terrorist says he also suspected there was an explosive.

Uzi Baruch ,

The soldier in military court
The soldier in military court
Flash 90

During a hearing on the IDF soldier who shot a neutralized terrorist on Tuesday, military judge Brigadier General Doron Piles revealed that the soldier's platoon commander, who was at the scene, admitted to suspecting that the terrorist had an explosive.

This testimony contradicts the prosecutor's claim that there was no such suspicion and that the soldier had no justification for shooting the terrorist.

The prosecutor, Lieutenant Colonel Adoram Rigler, submitted a video clip in which the soldier can be seen shaking hands with right-wing activist Baruch Marzel after shooting the terrorist.

"The respondent (the soldier) does not look very stressed," he explained. "He approaches two civilians at the scene, shakes their hands, and even smiles. He gives a friendly pat on the shoulder. We can see that he is not stressed and not in an emotional turmoil, even though he tries to claim that, at the time he's enjoying himself, he's still in an emotional turmoil.

"We don't believe the suspect's version, according to which he acted out of self defense. We will prove that, even during the course of his actions, he acted in contradiction to orders."

The prosecutor further claimed that, after the attack, the soldier told his battalion commander that he suspected the terrorist was armed with a knife. The battalion commander then answered, "So why did you shoot him and not kick away the knife? I think you're lying."

The battalion commander also gave testimony, during which he admitted that he did not include scenarios of a terrorist with an explosive when he practiced the rules of engagement with his unit.

Rigler closed his remarks during today's discussion by saying, "There is enough evidence to file charges."

The defense, including lawyers Ilan Katz, Eyal Besserglick, Binyamin Malka and Karmit Shahiber, is expected to ask for the soldier to be released home, or at least place on house arrest.