- Published on Wednesday, 11 April 2012 09:28
On Tuesday, April 10th, an Israeli court postponed a final decision regarding the civil plea submitted against Israel in the killing of the American peace activist, Rachel Corrie. The decision, which was supposed to be issued at the end of April, has been pushed back for several months.
Rachel Corrie is a human rights activist who was killed on March 16, 2003 in Rafah, in the Gaza Strip, after she was crushed by an Israeli D-9R caterpillar bulldozer during a peaceful demonstration protesting against the demolish of Palestinian houses. Rachel was from Olympia City, Washington. She was 23 years old when she was killed.
In 2005, Lawyer Hussein Abu Hussein brought a case against the State of Israel on behalf of Rachel's family, condemning Israel for its role in their daughter's killing. The oral arguments of the case started on March 10, 2010 and lasted for 15 sessions. The jury listened to 23 witnesses. Their testimonies written in the court record comprised over 2,000 pages. All the witnesses for the prosecution publicly announced their names. Four of them were activists with the International Solidarity Movement who witnessed Rachel's death. Most of the witnesses for the Israeli government announced only their initials and were hidden from view while at the stand.
The American ambassador and several local and international legal and human rights institutions accompanied Corrie's family to the hearing sessions. At the last court session on July 10, 2011, Judge Oded Gershon of the Central Court of Haifa set a deadline for the two prosecutors to submit their closing arguments and announced that he will issue a decision on April 23, 2012. Today's announcement by the court to postpone a final decision was made after delayed submission of the final arguments by lawyers involved with the case.