Egyptian Rights Group Issues List of Israelis Accused of Killing POWs
An Egyptian human rights group issued Tuesday a list of Israelis charged with killing Egyptian prisoners of war (POWs) in the 1956 Sinai Campaign and in the Six Day War.
Israel Radio reported that the Egyptian Committee for Civilian Rights also demanded that the attorney general open an investigation into the alleged killings.
The list includes a number of retired Israeli soldiers charged with killing Egyptian soldiers taken prisoner.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and his Defense Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer topped the list, said the radio, cited by the Jerusalem Post newspaper.
Another Egyptian human rights group made similar calls in the past.
In 1995, the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) launched a campaign demanding justice for "inhuman" war crimes it said Israeli officers committed against Egyptian POWs during the 1956 and 1967 wars.
The call was sparked by confession of an Israeli soldier, Arye Biro, who said that he and other Israeli officers had carried out massacres of Egyptians during the 1956 war.
"We tied their hands and took them away," he said. "Etienne [Biro's commanding officer] did not order the killing openly; only stupid people need to be told what to do. However, I can say that Etienne was not sorry for the victims, he did not even punish the ones who got rid of the Egyptians. They were a burden. If we did not eliminate them, we would not be able to do our duty. All the stories that we made them run and then killed them are nonsense," the Middle East weekly quoted him at the time as telling the Post.
The EOHR said most of the killing was done by Israeli units, themselves short of supplies, who preferred to kill rather than take prisoners.
Biro's remarks caused a furor in Israel and there were demands that the crimes be investigated, the weekly said at the time – Albawaba.com
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