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Carter Center Calls for Accountability After Corrie Verdict

Aug. 29, 2012
Contact: Deborah Hakes 1-404-420-5124

Carter Center Calls for Accountability After Corrie Verdict at The Carter Center website.

The Carter Center

The Carter Center

(Atlanta) On Aug. 28, the district court in Haifa, Israel, ruled that the State of Israel was not responsible for the 2003 killing of Rachel Corrie, a 23-year-old U.S. peace activist who was crushed by an Israeli bulldozer as she attempted to nonviolently prevent the demolition of a Palestinian home in the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah. Israel’s policy of home demolitions has been widely criticized by human rights organizations as a form of collective punishment. It violates Israel’s obligations under the Geneva Conventions. The Corrie family had requested $1 in symbolic damages and legal expenses.

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro and human rights groups and have criticized Israel’s investigation of the case for a lack of thoroughness, transparency, and credibility.

“The killing of an American peace activist is unacceptable,” said former U.S. President Jimmy Carter. “The court’s decision confirms a climate of impunity, which facilitates Israeli human rights violations against Palestinian civilians in the Occupied Territory.”

Approximately 94 percent of Israeli military investigations of soldiers suspected of violent criminal activity against Palestinians and their property end without indictments, according to the Israeli human rights organization Yesh Din. 91 percent of investigations into crimes committed by Israeli civilians against Palestinians in the Occupied Territory also end without indictment. In this case, the district court judge ruled that the drivers of the bulldozer could not see her, despite eyewitness testimony to the contrary.

Posted by on Aug 29, 2012

News and Updates, Trial, Trial Press Releases »

Attorney Hussein Abu Hussein’s statement on verdict in Corrie wrongful death lawsuit

(Haifa, Israel – August 28, 2012) – While not surprising, this verdict is yet another example of where impunity has prevailed over accountability and fairness. Rachel Corrie was killed while non-violently protesting home demolitions and injustice in Gaza, and today, this court has given its stamp of approval to flawed and illegal practices that failed to protect civilian life. In this regard, the verdict blames the victim based on distorted facts and it could have been written directly by the state attorneys.

We knew from the beginning that we had an uphill battle to get truthful answers and justice, but we are convinced that this verdict distorts the strong evidence presented in court, and contradicts fundamental principles of international law with regard to protection of human rights defenders.

Posted by on Aug 28, 2012

News and Updates, Trial, Trial Press Releases »

Corrie Family and Legal Team to Hold Press Conference Monday, July 11, 2011 at American Colony Hotel, Jerusalem

(Haifa, Israel – July 10, 2011)– Craig and Cindy Corrie, the parents of peace activist Rachel Corrie, will hold a press conference tomorrow, Monday, July 11, at 11:00 at the American Colony Hotel in Jerusalem to discuss the conclusion of testimonies in their civil case against the State of Israel for their daughter’s killing, as well as next steps in their efforts to seek accountability. They will be joined by Rachel’s sister, Sarah Corrie Simpson, and Attorney Hussein Abu Hussein. [...]

Download: العربية (pdf, 616.52 kB), English (pdf, 535.31 kB), עִבְרִית (pdf, 585.69 kB)

Posted by on Jul 10, 2011

Cindy and Craig's Blog »

US collusion in the Gaza blockade is an affront to human rights

By Cindy Corrie, Originally published in The Guardian

My daughter’s death shows the cruelty of an America that won’t protect its own and is complicit in harming Palestinian civilians

When Greek authorities prevented the US ship the Audacity of Hope leaving its port in Athens this week, they dealt a blow to a group of brave and principled Americans who were trying to carry thousands of letters from US citizens to those who wait on Gaza’s shores.

I know many of the people who were on this boat, and my family’s letter was part of their cargo. In 2003 my daughter Rachel Corrie made her journey to Gaza and was run down and killed by a US-made Israeli military Caterpillar D-9 bulldozer. She was trying to protect a Gazan family and their home, one of thousands illegally destroyed in Israeli military clearing operations.

Now my family is on a parallel journey with those activists as we return this week to Israeli court to confront Colonel Pinhas Zuaretz, the commanding officer of the Gaza Division’s Southern Brigade in 2003. His testimony should shed light not only on actions of troops responsible for Rachel’s killing but also on the Israeli military’s broad failures as an occupying power to protect civilian life and property.

This week’s flotilla was travelling to Gaza, as Rachel did, to stand with Palestinians against oppression and illegal occupation and for a just, enduring peace.

Read the entire article here.

Posted by on Jul 8, 2011

News and Updates, Trial, Trial Press Releases »

Col. Pinhas Zuaretz Will Testify on July 10 in Final Hearing in Corrie Trial

Corrie Family and Legal Team to Hold Press Conference Monday, July 11, at American Colony Hotel, Jerusalem

(Haifa, Israel – July 7, 2011) – Former Gaza Division’s Southern Brigade Commander, Colonel Pinhas (Pinky) Zuaretz – the final witness in the case – is scheduled to testify Sunday, July 10, in the Corrie civil trial against the State of Israel.

Download: العربية (pdf, 630.19 kB), English (pdf, 554.97 kB), עִבְרִית (pdf, 596.58 kB)

Colonel Zuaretz was the commanding officer of the Israeli military’s Gaza Division’s Southern Brigade in 2003, when American peace activist Rachel Corrie was killed. Troops under his command were responsible for the actions resulting in her killing. Zuaretz is the highest ranking officer called as a government witness in the civil trial who had command responsibility in Gaza. He is possibly the highest such officer ever to face cross examination in a civil suit regarding the actions of the Israeli military against civilians in Gaza during the second intifada. His testimony is expected to shed light on the Israeli military’s failures as an occupying power to protect civilian life and property in the region. [...]

Posted by on Jul 7, 2011