Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

Germany and Russia 'discuss secret Ukraine deal'

Read more

WEB NEWS

Fake Twitter accounts spread Chinese propaganda

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Argentina set for deeper recession after default

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Dr Matshidiso Moeti, Former WHO Deputy Regional Director for Africa

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Towards a 'Third Intifada'?

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run? (part 2)

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

France commemorates a hero of the left

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run?

Read more

FOCUS

What solutions for California's overcrowded prisons?

Read more

  • France remembers murdered socialist hero Jean Jaurès

    Read more

  • Israel calls up 16,000 more reservist as Gaza death toll soars

    Read more

  • Sierra Leone declares state of emergency over Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • Kiev declares 24-hour ceasefire to aid MH17 probe

    Read more

  • Video: Inside Hamas ‘terror’ tunnels in Gaza

    Read more

  • Scores feared dead in India landslide

    Read more

  • Russia ordered to pay further €1.9 billion to Yukos shareholders

    Read more

  • Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run?

    Read more

  • Russia defiant as US, EU unveil 'phase three' sanctions

    Read more

  • US House votes to sue Obama for over-reaching his powers

    Read more

  • Argentina fails to reach deal with creditors

    Read more

  • Women should not laugh in public, Turkey's deputy PM says

    Read more

  • Suspect in Jewish Museum attack charged in 'terrorist' killings

    Read more

  • Rats on the rampage at Louvre museum gardens

    Read more

Middle east

Israeli soldiers convicted for using child as human shield

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-10-03

Two Israeli soldiers were convicted on Sunday for using a nine-year-old Palestinian boy to search for booby traps on their behalf during the 2008-2009 Gaza war.

AFP - An Israeli military court convicted two soldiers on Sunday of using a Palestinian child as a human shield by forcing him to check for booby traps during the 2008-2009 Gaza war.
  
A transcript of the court decision made available by the army said the infantry sergeants were found guilty of "exceeding their authority to the point of endangering life," and "conduct unbecoming," for ordering a nine-year-old boy to search bags confiscated from arrested Palestinians.
  
The court acknowledged however that at the time of the incident, January 15, 2009, the troops had been under "difficult and dangerous combat conditions" and had gone several nights without sleep.
  
Sentencing is to be decided at a later date, the military said.
  
Israel's Supreme Court has banned such actions, saying they amount to using a civilian as a human shield.
  
According to testimony released when the two soldiers went on trial in March, the child, identified as Majd R., said he feared for his life.
  
"I thought they would kill me. I became very scared and wet my pants," he said in an affidavit to Defence for Children International, a Geneva-based group.
  
"There were two bags in front of me," the boy said. "I grabbed the first one as he (the soldier) stood one-and-a-half metres (yards) away. I opened the bag as he pointed his weapon directly at me. I emptied the bag on the floor. It contained money and papers. I looked at him and he was laughing."
  
Army radio said several of the two soldiers' comrades attended the hearing wearing shirts saying, "We are the victims of Goldstone," referring to a UN Human Rights Council probe of the war by South African jurist Richard Goldstone that accused Israel and Palestinian militants of war crimes.
  
The report said there was evidence that both sides committed crimes against humanity during the 22-day conflict and recommended that the International Criminal Court examine its findings in the absence of "credible investigations" on both sides.
  
Israel vehemently rejected the report as "biased."
  
The military began its own investigation of the bag-searching incident in June 2009. It said the probe was unrelated to the Goldstone mission, which was visiting the Gaza Strip at the same time.
  
Israel launched the 22-day offensive in December 2008 in a bid to halt Palestinian rocket attacks from the territory ruled by the militant Hamas movement. Some 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed in the fighting.

Date created : 2010-10-03

  • MIDDLE EAST

    Clashes in Jerusalem after settler guard kills Palestinian

    Read more

  • GAZA STRIP

    UN criticises Israel, Hamas for inadequate war crimes probes

    Read more

COMMENT(S)