Israel removes officer shown hitting activist from post (BBC) British Broadcasting Company) 18 April 2012 Last updated at 14:22 GMT)
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An Israeli army officer filmed hitting a pro-Palestinian protester in
the face with his rifle has been dismissed from his post, the
A video showing Lt Col Shalom Eisner striking the young Danish
activist was shown on the internet and Israeli TV.
An army statement said Lt Col Eisner was moved from the post of
divisional deputy commander "on moral grounds".
Lt Col Eisner says the activist broke some of his fingers before the
events shown in the film.
The officer, who had already been suspended pending an investigation,
was also barred from senior command positions for two years.
In addition, Lt Col Eisner will not take up a planned posting at the
army´s officer school. Correspondents say he has not been dismissed
from the army.
An Israel Defence Forces (IDF) spokesman described the incident
as "extremely serious and in absolute contradiction with IDF ethics".
"There are different bodies, some of them anarchists and belligerent
war instigators, disparaging our soldiers to create a buzz in the
media, but we must maintain IDF ethics and avoid getting dragged into
a provocation," the spokesman, Brig Yoav Mordechai, said.
IDF Chief of Staff Lt Gen Benny Gantz also concluded in his
investigation that there had been "professional and command failure",
according to the statement.
The footage shows Lt Col Eisner shouting at protesters in the Jordan
Valley, near Jericho, and then hitting the activist, who does not
wish to be identified publicly, with his M16 rifle.
The protester said the demonstration was an entirely non-violent
affair. He was treated for light injuries in a Palestinian hospital.
(© BBC MMXII 04/18/12)
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