Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino on Sunday ordered his forces nationwide to suspend the use of tasers and announced the formation of an official inquiry and review into their use by police.
The move comes after a video released on Friday showed police repeatedly using the electrical shock weapon on right-wing activist Boaz Albert, who was being arrested in the West Bank settlement of Yitzhar for violating a court order forbidding his presence in the West Bank.
The video shows Albert apparently offering no resistance as he is repeatedly tased by police officers in sight of his children. According to reports, Albert’s brother was also tased at the scene by the same officers.
“I welcome the commissioner’s order to halt the use of taser guns until the police review is completed,” said MK Miri Regev (Likud) on Sunday, adding that she was “shocked” by the “humiliating” police treatment of Albert. The apparent police brutality was also roundly condemned by several left-wing politicians, including Meretz leader MK Zahava Gal-on.
Since tasers were approved for use by Israeli law enforcement in 2009, the police have repeatedly been subject to claims that they routinely misuse them. The taser gun employs two electrical prongs designed to subdue a subject with a strong electrical current.
According to documents submitted in a 2011 court case, one taser alone was fired some 300 times over a 60-day period, Haaretz reported on Sunday.