JERUSALEM, Dec. 18 -- An Israeli television station and newspaper have purchased an amateur video of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and the right to interview the cameraman for $400,000, Israeli radio said Monday. The lengthy film includes about two minutes focused on the strange behavior of Jewish extremist Yigal Amir, 25, at the Tel Aviv peace rally in the moments before he shot Rabin twice with a 9mm Barretta handgun. Officials from privately owned Channel Two television and Yediot Ahronot, the country's largest newspaper, would not say when the news agencies would make the film and interview public but hinted it would probably be by Friday. The unidentified cameraman thought about telling police of Amir's strange behavior before the murder of the Nobel Peace Prize winner, but his lawyer Yoram Samuel said Shalvinski wasn't sure what exactly he would tell police. He had insisted the film be shown in a sensitive manner without sensationalism. 'It is the tape of an amateur,' Shalom Kaital, news department manager at Channel Two told Israel Radio. 'But you can see some of the most interesting things on this tape.' From the rooftop of a two-story building near the rally, the cameraman reportedly filmed several Cabinet ministers extensively before the shooting, including Foreign Minister Shimon Peres, who replaced Rabin. He had a hobby of filming many such events on video, Samuel said. When Peres made moves to leave, Amir reportedly stood up, standing in the open with no police near him.
Amir told a judge at an earlier preliminary hearing he thought of shooting Peres but decided to save his bullets for Rabin. 'This is a document with high public value,' Kaital said. 'I wouldn't term NEWLN:the negotiating process> in terms of competition or winning.' Rabin's widow, Leah, has said she will not watch the video but does not oppose its viewing publicly. 'Maybe the television will be on at my house, but I won't watch the broadcasting of the murder tape,' Rabin told reporters. 'I don't want to, I can't and I don't have to.' When asked what he thought about the ethics of buying a tape of an assassination, Kaital said 'This is one of the most irregular things I ever did in my life.'