Ethiopian Israelis clash with police in Jerusalem

1,000 Ethiopian Israelis march in Jerusalem over brutal police attack on community member

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Ethiopians clashed with Israeli police Thursday night during protests against police brutality in Jerusalem, days after a policeman was seen pushing an Israeli soldier of Ethiopian descent.

Demas Fekadeh was filmed being pushed to the ground on Sunday after he refused to move upon the request of a police officer who was trying to clear the area due to a suspicious object.

Protests turned violent as around 1,000 Ethiopian Israelis began throwing stones and bottles as they marched from the police headquarters in Tel Aviv to the Prime Minister’s office.

Ten protesters and three police officers had to receive medical treatment for injuries sustained during the incidents, while two police officers and seven protesters were rushed to hospital.

Speaking at the scene, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat tried to calm the situation. "Do you doubt that the prime minister, ministers, and 120 Knesset members want to embrace the Ethiopian community?" he said.

Protest leaders were approached by Jerusalem Police Chief Chico Edri who asked them to keep the members of their community under control, as police dispersed the rowdy crowd.

Around 120,000 Jews of Ethiopian background live in Israel and have been living there after Jewish rabbis asserted their claims of biblical roots in 1973.

TRTWorld and agencies