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Egyptian court postpones hearing of lawsuit against Olmert

February 20, 2014 at 3:33 pm

The Compensations Department of Cairo North Court has postponed the hearing of a lawsuit filed against former Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, and the head of Israeli television, to June 27th. The lawsuit has been filed by families of Egyptian prisoners of war killed by the Israeli army in the 1967 war. In the upcoming hearing, the court is due to discuss completion of the suit’s papers with the lawyers concerned so that a time for the sentencing hearing can be fixed.

The brothers of Sayed Abu Raya, who was killed by Israeli soldiers after being captured during the 1967 war, along with the Egyptian Association for the United Nations and the families of 15 other Egyptian prisoners of war killed by Israel in 1967, have filed a lawsuit at a Cairo civil court against the former Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, and the head of Israeli TV. The two are being sued for 10 million Egyptian pounds in compensation for the Egyptian deaths. Court proceedings were initiated after Israel’s Channel 1 broadcast the Roh Shaked documentary which showed the Israeli army killing 250 Egyptian soldiers inside Israeli prisons after the 1967 military operations in the Sinai Peninsula had ended.

Both defendants belonged to the Shaked Unit established in 1954 to guard the Israeli border with Egypt and Jordan. In the film, when recalling their actions during the war, a number of former Shaked soldiers led by Israeli politician, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, expressed regret at the excessive use of force and cold blooded killing against members of the Egypt’s Thunderbolt Special Force who were pulling out toward the West after the end of combat.
The documentary shows scenes of Shaked soldiers firing at unarmed Egyptian soldiers raising their hands.
The Cairo North Court had assigned a three-member expert committee from the Radio and Television Union to examine the scenes and images shown on the documentary film and assess whether they include incidents of torture and violations against Egyptian prisoners of war. The committee will also look into how many prisoners of war there were; their status and the identity of the Israeli soldiers shown in the film committing these crimes.