Published on Jan 19, 2021
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VOICED BY: Philippa Meagher

An Israeli court has acquitted a Jewish settler charged with the manslaughter of a Palestinian child in October 1996.

The incident happened in the village of Hussan, near Bethlehem on the West Bank.

At the time Nachum Korman was the local security chief, and it's claimed he beat the 11-year-old boy to death with the butt of his gun, after being called out to stop a group of boys stoning Israeli cars.

Nachum Korman was celebrating with family and friends on Monday, after an Israeli court acquitted him of manslaughter.

The court heard medical evidence from an American doctor, who said the original autopsy had not conclusively established the cause of death.

Korman had been charged with beating the child with the butt of his gun, but he claims the boy fell and hit his head on a rock.

Korman says "he's suffered years of pain, and wants to thank the people of Israel and abroad, who sent contributions and supported him during the past three years. He also paid tribute to his family for their love and support."
SUPER CAPTION: Nachum Korman

The family of Hilmi Shawsha heard about the verdict at their home, not far from the cemetery where Hilmi is buried.

They say "they totally reject the verdict, and claim the judge knows nothing about justice."
SUPER CAPTION: Salim Shawsha, father of Hilmi Shawsha

His parents say at the time of the incident Hilmi and other Palestinian boys had stoned Israeli cars on a road near their village.

They say Nachum Korman, the local security chief, arrived at the scene and chased the boys away.

Palestinian witnesses say Korman grabbed Hilmi and beat him with the butt of his pistol.

However, Monday's court verdict seems to endorse Korman's version of events, that Hilmi fell in the chase and fatally hurt himself.

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