A military court session is underway to discuss the plea submitted by Hebron shooter Elor Azaria, which could see him released in the next two months. During the session, attorney Yoram Sheftel claimed Azaria only shot the terrorist because the soldier believed he was carrying an explosive device. “This is a chance to end this sordid affair,” Sheftel said.
Elor Azaria Photo Credit: Hillel Maeir/TPS
Hebron shooter Elor Azaria arrived Wednesday morning for a military court session to discuss his request for an early release. Azaria was convicted in March 2016 of manslaughter for shooting and killing a neutralized Palestinian terrorist.
The soldier has pled for a reduction of his sentence in half, which is unlikely to be accepted by the court. However, the prosecution has requested a reduction of his sentence by a quarter, which would see Azaria released as early as May. This plea is more likely to be accepted on the grounds of Azaria’s good behavior during his term in prison.
While presenting his case, attorney Yoram Sheftel claimed Azaria only shot the terrorist because the soldier believed he was carrying an explosive device. Sheftel also described the difficulties experienced by the Hebron shooter’s family and said that its members have been receiving death threats.
At the opening of the court session, Sheftel said in a statement: “This is a chance to end this sordid affair that widened the rift between Israeli society and the IDF. Azaria has been living an unending nightmare during the last two years. This is a process that began in a disgraceful manner – a murder indictment. After someone got a hold of themselves, he was indicted with a less severe charge.”