In April 2003 a call was received from Channel 4 that a member of a documentary crew had been shot and killed in Gaza. Exactly what could be done was not clear but with some experience of the region and of conducting investigations, Chris Cobb-Smith immediately flew out to provide assistance.
In Tel Aviv the essential details of the incident were obtained from the traumatised crew. With the support of the British Consulate a visit to the scene was organised to conduct an initial investigation. Most of the crew readily agreed to return; without this brave gesture the investigation would have been significantly more difficult.
Two days later the area was relatively unchanged; the footprints and tracks in the mud still bearing witness to the tragic events. After extracting the crew for their return to UK, Chris remained on site in Rafah for several days examining the scene, reviewing footage of the incident, checking light conditions, and creating maps and diagrams which included essential elements, such as weapon ranges.
The evidence collated in the final report was crucial in the subsequent coroner’s enquiry and eventual led to the acknowledgement of responsibility by the Israeli authorities.
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