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Joint List MK files complaint over police beating

MK Ofer Cassif, a Jewish member of the predominantly Arab Joint List electoral alliance, is pictured after being beaten and detained by Israeli police, during a demonstration in Jerusalem's Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood on April 9, 2021. (AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)
MK Ofer Cassif, a Jewish member of the predominantly Arab Joint List electoral alliance, is pictured after being beaten and detained by Israeli police, during a demonstration in Jerusalem's Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood on April 9, 2021. (AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)

Joint List MK Ofer Cassif has filed an official complaint against the police, after he was beaten and punched by officers on Friday, during a protest in East Jerusalem, rejecting the force’s claim that he was to blame for the violence.

Cassif, the only Jewish Knesset member in the predominantly Arab Joint List party, arrives at the Police Internal Investigations Department, which is part of the Justice Ministry, to lodge the complaint.

Before entering, he declares that “the violence against me is a symptom.”

“The violence directed against me is also a violation of the sovereignty and dignity of the Knesset,” Cassif says.

He has said he will ask Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to open his own investigation into the incident.

Cassif was participating in a weekly demonstration in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood against planned evictions when the violence broke out.

Officers initially said that Cassif had hit them first. The most recent version of events offered by police said that the Knesset member had incited the officers to beat him, allegedly saying that he dared them to hit him.

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