No More Anonymous Beatings: Police will Have to Wear ID

Ministry of Public Security gives nod to bill that would make hiding police identification a criminal offense.

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Gil Ronen,

 Police violence against Jews
Police violence against Jews
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Police in uniform will be obliged to wear identification badges at all times, and will not have the right to remove them at their discretion. The Ministry of Public Security has agreed to this idea and will not object to a bill that makes hiding police identification a criminal offense.

The bill was proposed by MK Uri Ariel (National Union), after numerous cases in which police acted with brutality yet could not be punished because they were not wearing identification when they committed the violence. The most famous such case was a raid on Chavat Gilad in 2002, in which police commander Shachar Ayalon instructed all the police under him to take off their ID badges and identify themselves with his name.

The Knesset's Interior Committee is to vote on the bill Monday and prepare it for final passage in the plenum. MK Ariel said that "this is an important amendment to the Police Order. From now on police will not be able to behave with violence and brutality and hide under a cover of anonymity."

Under current law, said Ariel, not wearing a badge is only a disciplinary offense. "The present situation does not let citizens file complaints against policemen and hurts the police's image more than anything else," he added.