Video of an Israeli sniper firing at a Palestinian man across the Gaza border fence and then rejoicing has drawn international attention, Reuters reported.
One of the soldiers took video of the incident and praised the shot.
“What a legendary film. I haven’t seen this kind of thing for a long time,” he said.
The incident took place during a riot on Dec. 22, 2017, following President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
“The video depicts a short part of the response to a violent riot, which included rock hurling and attempts to sabotage the security fence, and lasted about two hours. During the riot, means were taken in order to disperse it, including verbal warnings and calls to halt, using riot dispersal means and firing warning shots into the air,” according to an Israeli Defense Force statement.
“After none of these were successful, a single bullet was fired towards one of the Palestinians who is suspected of organizing and leading this incident, while he was a few meters from the fence. He was hit in the leg and injured. The video was not filmed from the position of the shooting, and was filmed by a soldier who was not part of the unit of the soldiers who fired,” the statement explained.
The IDF said the rejoicing “[does] not suit the degree of restraint expected of IDF soldiers and will be dealt [with] by commanders accordingly.”
Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman told reporters on Tuesday: “The Gaza sniper deserves a decoration, and the photographer a demerit.”
Video of the incident was widely broadcast on Israeli news media on Monday.
The video comes amid large Palestian protests along the Gaza border in the past few weeks during which 30 protesters have been killed.
The Israeli military supported its own actions, claiming the shots are fired to prevent breaches along the fence.