Aharonovich, Danino Meet to Dispel Media Frenzy

Reconciliation between feuding minister, police chief comes after police warn the public that fascination with scandals 'harming the force.'

Tova Dvorin,

'Frenemies'? Danino and Aharonovich (file)
'Frenemies'? Danino and Aharonovich (file)
Flash90

Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich (Yisrael Beytenu) and Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino made an attempt at reconciliation on Tuesday, after a very public spat erupted between the two defense officials earlier this week. 

The meeting was held in "good spirits," the Israel police announced after the meeting, and noted that a public hearing will be held over the appointment of the next Commissioner, who is set to replace Danino in a few months.

In the meantime, it attempted to quietly distill the Israeli media's fascination with the spat, as well as with multiple problems facing the Israeli police force. 

"Discussion over the future identity of the commissioner is not relevant now," it said in a statement. "The police is now facing many challenges, and preoccupation with the subject in the media can negatively affect the efficiency of the police and all officers facing these challenges."

The Israel police has been rife with scandal over the past year, sparking a media frenzy over the fallout between Danino and Aharonovich. 

Failures include, among others, the case opened against Lahav 433 Commander Menashe Arbiv, who is involved in the Rabbi Yoshayahu Pinto affair; the resignation of Jerusalem District Police Commander Major Gen. Niso Shahar on charges of attempted sexual assault; several other sexual harassment accusations regarding senior officers; and the poor handling of the police call made by Israeli teenagers Naftali Frenkel (16), Gilad Sha'ar (16), and Eyal Yifrah (19), hy"d, who called the 100 hotline soon after being abducted and were not taken seriously by hotline operators. 

More recently, both Danino and Aharonovich have faced criticism for Jerusalem's "silent intifada," with many claiming both are not doing enough to quell the rioting and unrest seeping from the capital's Arab neighborhoods outward. 

Likewise, both have pledged to "clean up the force" following the sudden resignation of Jerusalem District Commander Yossi Pariente earlier this month. After the resignation, Danino announced that he would initiate a polygraph test policy for future police candidates; Aharonovich vowed to bring a "new spirit" to the police force.

The latest spat has officials severely worried over the cohesion of Israel's security system, however, with one senior police officer expressing concerns to Walla! News on Monday that tension between the two could result in the divorce between the Ministry and the police. 




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