Police deny gun permit to soldier who killed wounded Palestinian attacker
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Police deny gun permit to soldier who killed wounded Palestinian attacker

Elor Azaria, who was refused a license in August, unsuccessfully appeals decision, which says he could be a danger to public safety

Elor Azaria, center, visits in the West Bank city of Hebron following his release from prison where he served a sentence for the 2016 manslaughter of a Palestinian attacker he shot in the city during his military service, July 3, 2018. (Wisam Hashlamoun/Flash90)
Elor Azaria, center, visits in the West Bank city of Hebron following his release from prison where he served a sentence for the 2016 manslaughter of a Palestinian attacker he shot in the city during his military service, July 3, 2018. (Wisam Hashlamoun/Flash90)

A former Israeli soldier who went to prison for killing an incapacitated Palestinian attacker has lost his appeal for a gun license.

In August, the Israel Police turned down Elor Azaria’s request to hold a firearm, saying it had not found any credible threat to him, and insisting that he could pose a threat to public safety.

Azaria appealed, noting that he had been convicted in a military, not a civil, court and claiming that his conviction did not support claims that he could be dangerous.

In its Thursday decision, police said that Azaria’s conviction in a military court nevertheless created a real fear that he could be dangerous if given a gun.

Azaria killed Abdel Fattah al-Sharif in March 2016 in Hebron in the West Bank, minutes after Sharif stabbed an Israeli soldier and was shot and disarmed by other troops at the scene.

He was lying on the ground when Azaria shot him in the head.

The incident, captured on video, divided Israeli society and revived a heated debate over how to treat Palestinian attackers.

Azaria was sentenced to 18 months in prison, 12 months probation, and a demotion in rank.

He was freed from prison in May after serving nine months.

Gun licenses are strictly controlled in Israel and are usually only granted to those who can show they have a real need for personal protection.

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