Slain asylum seeker was beaten, untreated for 18 minutes after Beersheba attack

Ben Sales

TEL AVIV (JTA) — During a terror attack at the Beersheba central bus station on October 18, 2015, Haftom Zarhum, an Eritrean asylum seeker, was killed by Israeli civilians and security forces who mistook him for the assailant.

New CCTV footage released on Monday now shows that Zarhum, 29, was beaten by nine people, including civilians, security forces, prison officials and soldiers. Four of them have been indicted for their actions.

The footage brings to light the fact that Zarhum laid on the floor of the bus station for a total of 18 minutes before he was treated by members of Magen David Adom, who had arrived 10 minutes earlier. The actual attacker, a Bedouin citizen of Israel, killed a soldier and wounded about a dozen others.

Zarhum, who had been seeking an extension for his visa to remain in Israel, was shot several times, attacked with a rifle butt to his head, kicks to his head and body, and had a chair thrown at him by a bus driver after he had already been shot. The footage also depicts Israeli forces hitting him with a bench. At one point, an Israeli citizen attempts to shield Zarhum from the crowd, but is pushed aside and hit.