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NIF CEO Sokatch: “We Stand With Ethiopian Israelis in the Face of Racism and Police Violence”

1 July 2019

UPDATE – 3 July 2019: Today marks the third day of protests against police violence against the Ethiopian Israeli community in Israel. Thousands of protestors took to the streets, blocking twelve major junctions across Israel: Tel Aviv, Ashdod, Rishon LeTzion, Netanya, Petah Tikva, Ramle, Jerusalem, Kiryat Malachi, Rechovot, Ashkelon, and others. The focus of the protest is the death of an 18-year-old, unarmed Ethiopian citizen of Israel who was shot by an off-duty police officer on Monday, July 1.

Yesterday, according to Haaretz, 136 protestors were arrested and 26 protestors were injured as physical force, including tear gas and stun grenades, were used against the crowds. Today, police announced that they will not allow protestors to block roads, a move that will likely result in more violence.

The New Israel Funds stands firmly in support of the protestors and supports all non-violent means of protest against discrimination, racism and police violence in Israel.

On Monday, Daniel Sokatch, CEO of the New Israel Fund, released the following statement:

“For the second time this year, a young Ethiopian Israeli was shot and killed by a police officer. We will say his name — over and over again: Solomon Teka, Solomon Teka, Solomon Teka. He was unarmed. He was eighteen years old. He presented no danger to the off-duty police officer who, according to eye witnesses, took aim and shot him in a Haifa suburb. Today we stand with Ethiopian Israelis, who are rightly and justly angry, once again protesting racism and police violence, demanding an end to this pattern of deadly racism. Ethiopian Israelis, like all Israelis, deserve accountability and honesty from police and the Israeli government. We will not stand idly by the blood of our brother. Black lives matter — in Israel and everywhere.”

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