HEBRON - Israeli settlers celebrating a Jewish holiday in the occupied West Bank Sunday paid tribute to a soldier who shot dead a wounded Palestinian assailant, with some even dressing up as him.

A parade in the city of Hebron for Purim, which sees participants dress up, began at the spot where the shooting which deeply divided Israeli society occurred on the same holiday last year. The parade traditionally begins there, but this year it took on particular significance -- a prominent far-right lawyer dressed up as the soldier, Sgt. Elor Azaria, who has been convicted of manslaughter.

At least one other person also dressed up in tribute to Azaria, and a loudspeaker announcement as the parade began thanked him, drawing cheers from some in the crowd. Several hundred people took part in the parade in Hebron, where the presence of some 500 Israeli settlers in the heart of the city of some 200,000 Palestinians leads to near-constant tension. Security was tight, with a large deployment of Israeli soldiers and police. "I think it's very normal that people feel that he saved us from a terrorist who tried to kill us, and a lot of people support him," Tzipi Schlissel, 51, who lives down the street from where last year's incident occurred, said of Azaria. "I think the terrorist who gets support from a lot of people in the world is an evil person that came to kill people, and he can't complain that he got killed when he came to kill other people," added Schlissel, who said her father was killed in an attack years ago.