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Israel court hears appeal over Rachel Corrie's death

May 22, 2014 10:07 A.M. (Updated: May 23, 2014 10:56 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Israel's Supreme Court on Wednesday heard an appeal by the parents of a US activist who was crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer in 2003.

The parents of Rachel Corrie asked for a decision clearing the military of any responsibility for her death to be overturned, alleging "negligence" in the treatment of the case by an Israeli court.

"I think they've set a very low threshold in terms of what would be considered negligence, and just ignored the lack of a credible and thorough investigation," Rachel's father Craig Corrie said, referring to the 2012 court ruling.

"If you take (all the material for the appeal) together, what you have is a mechanism that allows the Israeli military to act with impunity," he told journalists before the hearing.

"As an ex-soldier myself I think that's very dangerous."

His wife Cindy Corrie said: "I think there are very important decisions that this court needs to make that impact far more than Rachel."

It was unclear when the Supreme Court would rule on the appeal.

An Israeli court in 2012 cleared the army of any responsibility for Corrie's death, rejecting a civil suit filed by the family.

The ruling sparked an angry reaction from the family, with Cindy Corrie accusing the Israeli authorities of a cover-up.

According to eyewitness accounts, the 23-year-old was killed by a military bulldozer in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on March 16, 2003.

Corrie, from Olympia, Washington, had joined a small group of international activists trying to stop the Israeli army from demolishing houses in the southern Gaza town of Rafah during the height of the Second Intifada.

Few Israelis showed much sympathy for Corrie's death, which took place at the height of the uprising in which thousands of Palestinians were killed and hundreds of Israelis died.

Ma'an staff contributed to this report
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