BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — An Israeli army commander testified in court Thursday that Elor Azaria, the Israeli soldier who shot dead Abdel Fattah al-Sharif while he was lying wounded on the ground after an alleged attempted stabbing in Hebron, saying there was no “operational justification” for Azaria’s actions, according to Israeli news media.
The company commander of Azaria, Maj. Tom Neeman, recounted to the court the chilling moments after the execution style killing that took place in Hebron’s old city on March 24.
After the deadly shooting, for which Azaria is now on trial for manslaughter, Neeman testified that he saw "Elor with his hands on the weapon, walking westward.”
“I approached him and asked, ’Why did you do it?’,” Neeman continued, “He answered me, ’This terrorist was alive, and he needs to die.’” Neeman added: “I was angry at him for doing this. Essentially a shooting had been conducted at the scene that I was in charge of, without my permission.”
Neeman also added that prior to Azaria’s murder of al-Sharif, no one had paid attention to al-Sharif, who was lying immobilized on the ground, or claimed that the he was booby-trapped.