Maaminim Bamishtara at the range
Maaminim Bamishtara at the range PR

A program that intended to integrate observant Jews into Israel's police force will close, the Religious Zionist website Kipa reported. The program will now be merged with the Israel Police, who will run it in-house.

The program, titled 'Maaminim Bamishtara' (Believing In The Police in Hebrew), had been operating for seven years in an attempt to integrate religious Jews into Israel's police force. While other security-focused organizations such as the IDF, Shin Bet, and the Mossad have a large number of employees hailing from the Religious Zionist community, the police have remained noticeably free of the religious.

Maaminim Bamishtara also aimed to rehabilitate the troubled relationship between the Religious Zionist sector and the police, which had reached rock bottom after the Gaza disengagement in 2005 and the violent Amona evacuation in 2006.

As part of the initiative, aspiring law enforcement officials would spend a year after joining the police in a special pre-preparatory academy. The cadets would also do the police's basic training course together before being sent to various police units. Maaminim Bamishtara had received the full support of the police, who appointed program head Rabbi Rami Brachiyahu as the chief rabbi of the force in 2015.

Since its founding, Maaminim Bamishtara has had 108 cops join the force, including 8 officers. "The program Maaminim Bamishtara started because of a crisis, and the program gave the religious policeman tools that would enable him to fulfill his duties while responding to religious needs," said founder Nochi Eyal.

"I am proud that the program was a significant part of enhancing the human capital and improving the image of the police in the eyes of the religious public."