Two Israeli Police Officers Charged With Beating, Threatening to Shoot Palestinian in Jerusalem

The defendants allegedly assaulted and threatened to shoot a man they suspected to be an assailant but was actually a bystander.

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Illustrative photo of border policemen in Jerusalem's Old City.
Border policemen in Jerusalem's Old City. The individuals in the photo have no connection to the May 2016 incident that was the subject of a Justice Ministry indictment.Credit: Ammar Awad/ Reuters

The Justice Ministry's police investigation division has filed an indictment against two border policemen in Jerusalem Magistrate's Court over allegations that the pair attacked a Palestinian in Jerusalem's Old City in May of last year and threatened to shoot him.

According to the indictment, the policemen, Yosef Avdati and Oshri Ohayon, were called to the Christian Quarter of the Old City following a stabbing attack in the area. They are said to have spotted the alleged Palestinian victim on the street, suspecting that he had been involved in the stabbing.

The indictment alleges that the border policemen quickly approached the Palestinian, with one of them saying: "Here he is." One of the policemen, identified in the indictment as Defendant 1, then allegedly hit the Palestinian in the eye with the butt of his weapon without informing him that he was under arrest and without questioning him first. When the Palestinian asked the policemen to desist, they swore at him and one of the two grabbed him by the throat and pushed him, face-first, against a nearby door, according to the indictment.

The border policemen then allegedly began hitting the Palestinian with their weapons and fists on various parts of his body and called to another policeman in the area to shoot him. After the beatings stopped and the border policemen began walking away, the Palestinian yelled to them that he would complain to the Justice Ministry, the indictment states. Defendant 1 the allegedly approached him again, hitting him in the chest with the butt of his weapon. 

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