Israel: No charges to be filed in case of American injured in protest

By Howard Schneider
Washington Post Foreign Service
Monday, February 1, 2010; 3:59 PM

JERUSALEM -- Israeli officials have said they will not file charges against police involved in injuring Tristan Anderson, a U.S. resident who suffered brain damage when he was struck in the head with a tear gas canister during a West Bank protest in March. Anderson, 38, remains hospitalized in Israel.

Officials said there was no criminal intent on the part of the police.

Anderson, of Oakland, Calif., attended the March protest as part of the International Solidarity Movement, a group that has clashed intermittently with Israeli authorities. In recent years, two of its members have been killed in unrelated incidents involving Israeli forces. Israeli officials have accused the group of blurring the line between legitimate protest and involvement with those intent on violence.

Protesters who were with Anderson on the day he was injured say that the tear gas canister that hit him was thrown as the protest was winding down, and that he was not involved in violence. The decision not to file against police in his case was criticized by an attorney for his family.

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