Israeli President Reuven Rivlin on Sunday rejected a request to pardon a soldier convicted of manslaughter for shooting dead a Palestinian man.

His decision came after the Israeli military chief of staff reduced the sentence for Elor Azaria, 20, who shot dead 21-year-old Abdel al Fattah al-Sharif at close range in Hebron.

A statement by Rivlin’s office confirmed that it had formally rejected the pardon for Elor Azaria.

“President Reuven Rivlin┬átoday took the decision to deny the request for pardon filed by Elor Azaria,” it said in an English-language statement, exactly one month after the jailed soldier submitted the request.

Azaria’s sentence was reduced from 18 to 14 months and announced nearly a year after he shot a bullet from a close range into the head of Sharif.

The former Israeli soldier shot dead Sharif in March 2016. The incident was caught on video by a human rights group and this was later spread online and went viral.


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Featured image courtesy of AP