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  • High-ranking Ethiopian police officer defends cops Posted on 07 May 2015

    In a stark departure from the onslaught of stinging criticism recently leveled against the Israeli Police as racist, a senior Ethiopian officer said on Wednesday that, although improvements must be made to mend badly frayed relations, he stands with the beleaguered force.

    In a lengthy Facebook posting, Itbak Avraham, deputy commander of the Sadot police station in central Israel, said that while not perfect, the nation’s police force is highly trained and must be supported.

    “As someone who is part of the organization for many years – as someone who served in various units and functions – it is important to stress that the Israeli Police has prepared me, as it trains all police, to give the best possible service to all citizens,” he wrote. “It has excellent policemen, who are all are equal before the law.”

    Still, Avraham said that the police, and the government, must prioritize how to improve its treatment of Ethiopian citizens.

    “There is no doubt that both the police and the State of Israel must consider how they can improve the treatment of the Ethiopian community, and give it top priority,” he wrote.

    “We must examine the claims of the community in depth, and provide fairness of transparency in order to produce useful solutions.

    We must fight to increase the trust between members of the community and the Israeli police.”

    Equally important, Avraham stressed, is that demonstrators cease turning to violence as a means of expressing their outrage.

    “Violence, vandalism, and the assaulting of police officers by some of the demonstrators must be condemned,” he wrote. “Violence is not our way, and I condemn it, regardless of who enables it.”

    Avraham concluded by stating that he believes the police will continue to serve society to the best of its ability, while noting that he will personally uphold the highest standards, and fight any racism he encounters.

    “I, and others like me, will continue to shatter racism and prejudice through personal excellence in our fields, without any self-pity,” he wrote. “Hopefully, we will get the desired change.”

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