by George Rishmawi / International Middle East Media Center –
PALESTINE (January 14, 2004) — Tom Hurndall, a British Peace Activists died last night in London Hospital after almost 8 months under life support machines. Hurndall, 22, was shot by an Israeli soldiers in Yebna near Rafah Camp south of Gaza Strip on April 12 while he was trying to save two Palestinian children caught under Israeli fire.
Tom had been in a persistent vegetative state since being shot, and succumbed to pneumonia on Tuesday night, the Guardian paper said.
The Soldier who shot Tom is facing several charges. According to Haaretz Israeli daily paper, the soldier was recently charged with aggravated assault, but the military judge handling the case told the family’s lawyer in Tel Aviv that the charge was likely to be revised to murder or manslaughter after Hurndall’s death, it said.
The soldier, who has not been named, has also been charged with obstruction of justice. The soldier is alleged to have asked for permission to open fire only after having already shot Hurndall, who was critically wounded in the back of his head. He is also alleged to have lied about the incident when questioned about it afterward.
Hurndall is not the only International Peace Activist killed by the Israeli Army. Not long time before Tom, Rachel Corrie, a 23 American Peace Activist from Olympia Washington was crushed by a bulldozer in the same area on March 16, 2003. Efforts to open an investigation of her death are met with rejection from Israel.
Hurndall joined the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) on April 5, 2003, one week before he was shot. The ISM is a Palestinian Led Organization that conducts and promotes a nonviolent resistance to the Israeli Occupation to Palestine through nonviolent direct actions organized by Palestinians and Internationals in the occupied in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.