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Border Police suspends troops after officer ‘forgotten’ in Palestinian town

Chief of gendarmerie also temporarily halts all training and operational activity after officer seen operating alone in al-Ram, near Jerusalem

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.

A Border Police officer seen walking in the Palestinian town of al-Ram on January 3, 2023. (Screenshot used in accordance with clause 27a of the copyright law)
A Border Police officer seen walking in the Palestinian town of al-Ram on January 3, 2023. (Screenshot used in accordance with clause 27a of the copyright law)

The chief of the Border Police on Wednesday ordered the suspension of a commander and several officers from duty after one officer was “forgotten” in a Palestinian town near Jerusalem a day earlier.

During the Tuesday incident in the West Bank town of al-Ram, the officer could be seen walking down a street by herself, in an apparent violation of police protocol, which stipulates that forces must operate at minimum in pairs.

According to police, Border Police officers were operating in the area to arrest three suspects who allegedly hurled stones at forces earlier.

Palestinian media claimed police had “forgotten” the officer in the town.

But a police spokesman denied the reports, saying additional forces were “within eyeshot” of the officer.

Still, after an initial investigation was conducted by the head of the gendarmerie’s West Bank division, Border Police chief Amir Cohen ordered the suspension of the “forgotten” officer’s commander and all the officers involved in the incident until the investigation is complete.

Additionally, Cohen ordered a temporary halt to all training and operational activity in order for troops to spend time “learning and practicing the lessons of the initial investigation.”

The findings of the final probe are to be presented to Cohen personally, the spokesman said.

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