JERUSALEM – A soldier convicted of fatally shooting an incapacitated Palestinian attacker has begun serving his prison term.
Elor Azaria arrived at the military prison inside the Tzrifin base in central Israel on Wednesday to serve out his 18-month sentence. Azaria was accompanied by dozens of supporters who have rallied behind him since the 2016 shooting in the West Bank.
Azaria, a combat medic, was recorded on cellphone video as he shot a badly wounded Palestinian who had previously stabbed a soldier. He was convicted of manslaughter.
The case has divided a country where military service is mandatory.
Israel's military pushed for his prosecution, saying he violated the military's vaunted code of ethics. But Israel's nationalist right sided with Azaria and called him a hero.