Police were reportedly cordoning off a street due to a suspicious object when the soldier, who was riding his bicycle in full uniform, asked them what was happening. Police allegedly responded by lashing out at soldier. They pushed him off his bike, and one officer allegedly said, “I can do whatever I want,” and then began beating the soldier.
Ethiopian IDF Soldier Allegedly Beaten By Police In Unprovoked Racist Attack
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
An Ethiopian IDF soldier was allegedly attacked by police Sunday evening in Holon just south of Tel Aviv, and beaten without provocation, Israeli media reported.
According to the Times of Israel write-up of the reporting, two policemen were suspended Monday after security camera footage showing them beating the soldier, Damas Pakada, was released.
Police were reportedly cordoning off a street due to a suspicious object when Pakada, who was riding his bicycle in full uniform, asked them what was happening.
Police allegedly responded by lashing out at Pakada. They pushed him off his bike, and one officer allegedly said, “I can do whatever I want,” and then began beating Pakada.
Pakada said that the officer threatened to shoot him in the head.
“The cop told me, ‘I’m doing my job and if I need to put a bullet in your head, I would do it. I am proud of my job,'” Pakada reportedly told Ynet.
Police only stopped harassing Pakada after he backed away and lifted a sizable rock as if to stone them.
But several police officers arrested Pakada for assault.
The video footage, however, shows Pakada – a 21-year-old orphan who emigrated from Ethiopia with his four siblings seven years ago – did not assault police and did not throw the rock.
Pakada said he couldn’t remove the blood stains from his army uniform.
“I feel terrible, and humiliated. This is a disgrace to the State of Israel. It’s because of [my] skin color,” Pakada told Channel 2 News yesterday.
Pakada was only released from police custody after his family got the security camera footage and released it.
Police reportedly promised a full investigation of the incident would take place.
“It doesn’t matter if this is a soldier in uniform or a normal citizen, this is not how an officer is expected to behave. Policemen work hard to serve the public and a rare event like this will not pass in silence,” a police source reportedly told Channel 2 News, while another police officer told the media the attack on Pakada was “shameful.”
Pakada’s brother reportedly told Channel 2 News the incident looked like racist cops in the US beating a black man.
“When I saw the [security camera video] clip, I couldn’t believe I was in Israel. I was sure it was a prank, that this is a clip from the US of white cops beating black citizens for no reason. Only by the army uniform, could I see that it [Israel and this] was my brother,” he said.