This isn’t the first time that Israel’s Ethiopian community is protesting against police policies. This time it ended relatively quietly, in contrast with past demonstrations. In 2015 this volcano had its first violent eruption when a video was posted online of a young Ethiopian who was being subdued and brutally beaten by two police officers. That, together with other controversies from the past against the Ethiopian community, like the time when blood donations that had been made by the community were thrown away, led to demonstrations and violent altercations between the police and members of the community.

 

In 2019 it happened again. Yehuda Biadga, a young Ethiopian soldier, was shot by a police officer when he was walking around with a knife on the street. The response came very swiftly, with members of the Ethiopian community flooding the streets of Tel Aviv once again in protest. This time the police were extra cautious not to respond with excessive force and to allow the demonstration to take place. Both the young and the old called upon Israel’s minister of interior security Gil’ad Arden to give answers, harshly criticizing him and also venting their anger towards Israeli law enforcement and Israel’s legal system altogether. They cried out with tears in their eyes as they demanded equality, asking for an end to the racism and aggression against them.  

 

This demonstration ended up being relatively quiet, aside from a few isolated violent incidents by some of the protestors at the end of the demonstration, which included stones being thrown and destruction of property. For the time being, there’s no telling what will come of this volatile situation.

A yellow patch with an Ethiopian Jew
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A yellow patch with an Ethiopian Jew