The following is a press release from the Rachel Corrie Foundation For Peace And Justice, quoted in full.The military commander in charge of the unit on the ground and the driver of the bulldozer that crushed to death Rachel Corrie in Rafah, Gaza in March 2003, are scheduled to testify on Thursday, October 21 in the civil lawsuit filed by Rachel’s family against the state of Israel for her unlawful killing.
Earlier this month, the court granted the State of Israel’s request that soldiers involved in the incident be permitted to testify behind a screen to protect their identity. Lawyers for the Corrie family appealed the decision to the Israeli Supreme Court, requesting that the family, at least be allowed to view the soldiers; however, the court refused to hear the challenge.
A decision was made for the bulldozer driver to testify behind a screen. However, because Captain R.S., the unit commander on the ground that day, had given an interview that had been broadcast on Israeli television in 2003, and so was known to the public, the presiding judge ruled that he will testify in plain view. His name still remains undisclosed.
A third witness in the unit, known only as S.L., who was driving the second bulldozer near Palestinian homes in Rafah, is scheduled also to testify behind a screen. Even though his identity was disclosed during the TV broadcast, his name still remains redacted in official court records.
Court hearings scheduled to be held on October 17-18 were postponed due to a death in Judge Gershon’s family. Therefore, additional court dates are anticipated to be added to the court calendar.
The October 21 hearing will take place between the hours of 9:00-16:00 before Judge Oded Gershon at the Haifa, District Court, 12 Palyam St., Haifa, Israel.
Please visit rachelcorriefoundation.org/trial for trial updates, changes to the court schedule and related information.