Azaria releases video announcement of his decision not to appeal IDF court's verdict

The former IDF soldier, who shot and killed a neutralized Palestinian terrorist in Hebron, repeated his claim that he had acted out of fear of danger, but added that he accepts the verdict and has asked the IDF Chief of Staff to lighten his sentence.
Screen capture: Channel 2 News

Former IDF soldier Elor Azaria, who was convicted of killing a neutralized Palestinian terrorist in Hebron, said Thursday he will not appeal the military court's verdict.

In a video uploaded to his Facebook page, Azaria said he has chosen to "end the legal procedures and not file an appeal with the Supreme Court," even though he believes he "may have been found not guilty."

This announcement comes just hours after Azaria asked IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot to lighten his 18-month prison sentence.

"My family and I have been going through 18 months of agony, which cost my parents their health," Azaria said. "I just want things to go back to normal as soon as possible."

Azaria in court Photo credit: Miriam Alster, Flash 90/Channel 2 News

Azaria added that he does not wish for his case to demotivate others from joining combat units. "This cannot happen. You should contribute as much as you can for our country. This is the only one we have," he said.

"I promise that my actions were taken out of fear of danger on the scene," Azaria said, sticking to his original story and rejecting the court's conclusion that he had shot the neutralized terrorist out of revenge. "But we're living in a state of law and the court has spoken."

"It's important for me to note that I grew up in a moral household. If I had known the terrorist wasn't carrying a bomb I wouldn't have shot him," he added.

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