Never-before-seen footage of the Mohammed al-Dura shooting raises additional questions about the iconic incident. The raw footage was shown Thursday in a French courtroom.
France 2 TV had been ordered in September by a Paris court to show raw footage of the 2000 shooting of al-Dura, a 12-year-old Palestinian, in the Gaza Strip as part of the appeal of a case against Philippe Karsenty, the head of a small watchdog group named Media Ratings.
Karsenty had accused France 2 of airing what amounted to a staged shooting of a Palestinian by Israeli troops, which quickly became an iconic symbol of Israeli brutality against Palestinians and helped unleash an international wave of hatred against Israel.
France 2 successfully sued Karsenty for defamation, but Karsenty appealed the decision.
The court, which saw only 18 of the 27 minutes of raw footage, was packed with supporters of Karsenty and the France 2 TV correspondent who filed the original report, Charles Enderlin.
The footage showed al-Dura lying motionless and apparently dead in the arms of his father after supposedly being shot. Seconds later, it shows the boy lifting his arm and peering through his fingers at the camera.
Karsenty said the footage proves his case and that the boy was not killed by Israeli soldiers – and may not even be dead.
“How much longer will French politicians and media bosses continue covering up for France 2 and for Enderlin?” he told JTA. “The claims of al-Dura’s death have now become ridiculous.”
A decision is expected at the next court hearing, scheduled for Feb. 24.