The charges were dropped after the prosecution concluded that the shooting had not violated the army’s rules of engagement.

IDF soldiers

IDF soldiers Photo Credit: IDF Spokesperson’s Unit

The State Attorney’s Office announced on Monday it is cancelling an indictment issued five years ago against two IDF servicemen who had shot a Palestinian teen near Ramallah.

In January 2013, a group of Palestinians gathered near the Israel-West Bank security fence and threw stones at IDF soldiers who were on patrol duty on the other side. At one point, 17-year-old Samir Awad got up and approached the fence. According to the indictment, he did not obey when the soldiers ordered him to stop.

After shooting toward the air several times, one IDF soldier fired toward Awad’s body and legs. Another IDF officer fired five more shots at him, which he said had been meant to warn him. Awad died later that day.

In their investigation, the defendants justified their decision to open fire at the Palestinian teen, claiming he had posed a danger to them. They further stated that similar cases had been dismissed in the past.