An Israeli Arab was sentenced to life in prison for the politically motivated murder of a soldier.
On Monday the Nazareth District Court handed down the term to Mohammed Anbatawi for the 2003 abduction and killing of army conscript Oleg Shaichat.
Though he had admitted to carrying out the murder on behalf of an obscure Israeli Arab terrorist group called the Galilee Liberators, Anbatawi, 23, told the court that the confession was coerced and that he planned to appeal the sentence.
Anbatawi had been linked to another Israeli Arab who was killed in a shootout with police and was found to be using Shaichat’s stolen rifle.
The case has long been mired in controversy. Within months of the discovery of Shaichat’s body, police announced the arrest of three Israeli-Arab suspects, who re-enacted the murder. But the security forces then admitted that the three were innocent and had been forced under interrogation to issue false confessions.