Palestinian security forces say they have disciplined eight officers caught on video beating a teenage boy with clubs as they were preventing dozens of protesters from reaching an Israeli checkpoint near the West Bank city of Bethlehem on Friday.
The video showed protesters throwing stones and bottles and then several officers beating the boy. It sparked criticism of the Palestinian leadership and demands to punish the officers.
The National Security Forces said Sunday that four senior commanders were suspended and will face “disciplinary measures.” Israeli media reports said they were removed from their posts.
Another four officers were sentenced to three months in prison.
Palestinian security forces have limited powers outside Palestinian population centers. Palestinian Authority policy under PA President Mahmoud Abbas has sought to prevent confrontation between Palestinian protesters and Israeli security forces.
Muslim rioters have repeatedly clashed with Israeli police and Border Police in Jerusalem over the past week, after security forces on Sunday found pipe bombs on the Temple Mount, in an operation carried out hours before Jews prepared to celebrate the New Year. The Shin Bet security service alerted police to the cache, apparently an effort by Palestinians to stock up on bombs, flares and rocks ahead of an organized riot.