U.S. requests probe into citizen’s eye loss


JERUSALEM (JTA) — The United States has asked Israel to investigate the protest in which an American Jewish art student lost her eye.

The request came through the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv, according to reports Monday.

Emily Henochowicz, 21, of Maryland, was hit in the eye on May 31 by a tear gas canister fired by Israeli troops during a protest at a Jerusalem roadblock against Israel’s interception of an aid flotilla headed for the Gaza Strip. Nine activists were killed during confrontations between Navy commandos and activists on board one of the flotilla’s ships.

Henochowicz, a student at Cooper Union in New York now studying at Jerusalem’s Bezalel Academy, had participated in other nonviolent protests against Israel’s presence in the West Bank.

Henochowicz, who had surgery at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem to remove her damaged eye, returned last week to the United States, where she will require more surgeries.

The Border Police’s internal investigation showed that the tear gas canister hit a wall and then Henochowicz, and that she was not targeted, according to Haaretz. The army is investigating the incident, the Israeli daily reported.

U.S. citizen Tristan Anderson, 38, lost an eye and suffered brain damage when he was hit in the head with a tear gas canister during a West Bank protest in March 2009.

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