Monday, June 17, 2024
Monday, June 17, 2024

HomeFact CheckDid The Police Chief Join The Anti-Netanyahu Protest In Israel’s Tel Aviv?...

Did The Police Chief Join The Anti-Netanyahu Protest In Israel’s Tel Aviv? Here’s The Truth Behind Viral Video

Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

Claim
The Police Chief in Israel’s Tel Aviv district joined the ongoing protests against PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s plans for judicial changes.

Fact

While the video shows Tel Aviv Police Chief touring the streets during the protests, he did not “join” the protests.

As Israel is witnessing unprecedented protests over Prime Minister Netanyahu’s controversial judicial overhaul plans, social media platforms are inundated with videos and images showing mass protests that have gripped the country. One such video shows two men in uniform, marching down a street, while being cheered on by a sea of people, most likely demonstrators. Users sharing the video are claiming that it showed the Tel Aviv district police chief joining the fierce demonstrations against Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposed judicial changes. Newschecker has found the claim incorrect.

Several Twitter and Facebook users shared the video claiming, “The police chief of the Tel Aviv district joined the demonstrations against Netanyahu.”

Such posts can be seen here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

Why Are Israelis Protesting?

Earlier this year, the Israeli government unveiled a plan that would give them greater control over appointing Supreme Court judges. PM Netanyahu said the changes are needed to curb activist judges who overreach their powers to interfere in politics. Soon after, thousands of Israelis took to streets protesting against the Netanyahu-led government’s proposal of overhauling the judicial system in the country.

Following months of massive protests, PM Netanyahu on Monday announced that he would delay his government’s plan to overhaul Israel’s judiciary.

Also Read: Israeli Policeman Strangling Palestinian Child To Death? Old Video From Sweden Viral With False Claim

Fact Check/Verification

On carefully analysing the video, we spotted several protesters carrying the national flag of Israel. Additionally, the sky-blue colour attire of the two men marching in the middle resembled the official uniform of the Israeli police.

Screengrabs from viral video | Courtesy: Twitter@WarMonitors
(L-R) Screengrabs from viral video and image tweeted by @israelpolice

We then looked up “Tel Aviv Police Chief” in Hebrew on Google, and found a report by Israeli website Israelhayom.co.il carrying a photograph of the two uniformed men seen in the viral video.  The report, dated March 27, 2023, identified the elderly man as  Chief Amichai Ashad, commander of the Tel Aviv Police District, and stated, “…Ashad was at the heart of the storm recently after his impeachment by the Minister of National Security Itamar Ben Gabir was frozen. Last Saturday, Ashad was present at a protest in Tel Aviv and noted that “the protesters are not against the police.” “

(L-R) Screengrabs from viral video and image published in Israelhayom.co.il

Another report by Inn.co.il also identified the elderly police officer in the blue uniform as the commander of the Tel Aviv district, while elaborating on how the decision to impeach him was frozen.

Screengrab from Inn.co.il

There was no mention of the Police Chief joining the protest against Netanyahu.

We could thus conclude that the video indeed shows the Tel Aviv District Police Chief marching in the streets surrounded by protesters.

But did he actually join the protest against PM Netanyahu’s judicial reform plans?

No Credible Reports Support The Claim

A keyword search for “Tel Aviv police join protest,” & “Netanyahu” on Google did not yield any credible news reports on the same. Further, the search of the same keywords in Hebrew also did not throw up any recent reports suggesting that the Tel Aviv Police Chief has joined the ongoing protest in Israel against PM Netanyahu’s judicial reform plan.

Also Read: After Calling ‘The Kashmir Files’ A Propaganda, Israeli Filmmaker Nadav Lapid Makes a U-Turn? Here’s The Truth

“Cop Was Touring Premises As Part Of His Job”

Following this, we scanned through the comment sections of social media posts carrying the viral footage, and found a reply by Daniel Carmon, former Ambassador of Israel to India,  asserting that the Police Chief has “by no means” joined the protest. Adding, “He is touring the premises as part of his job,as he does every now & then. True, he is very well received by the crowd,under his command,TLV Police has been respecting the Right to Protest as a value.”

Screengrab from Twitter

Newschecker further reached out to Uria Bar Meir,  fact checker at Israeli fact checking outlet The Whistle , who told us, “As we understand it, the video is authentic. However, the Chief of Tel-Aviv District Police (part of Israel Police) didn’t lead the protests but supervised the situation and people went behind him. He is kind of a hero for the opposition of the Judicial reform because the National Security Minister tried to impeach him for not being more brutal with the protesters. (sic).”

Israeli Police Deny Claim

Speaking to Newschecker, the Israeli Police confirmed that the claim made in the viral post was fake and that the Tel Aviv police chief was out at the protest site as a part of his job, ensuring the protests were peaceful. “All the district police commanders, be it Jerusalem or Tel Aviv, were out, making sure that there were no untoward incidents. The Tel Aviv police chief was filmed while he was doing his duty, maintaining law and order. He was not participating in the protests,” we were told.

Conclusion

We could thus conclude that the viral post claiming that the Tel Aviv Police Chief has joined the ongoing protests in Israel against PM Netanyahu’s judicial reform plans is false.

Result: False

Sources

Tweet By @danielocarmon, Dated March 28, 2023
Conversation With Israeli Fact Checker Uria Bar Meir On March 28, 2023
Conversation With Israeli Police On March 28, 2023


If you would like us to fact check a claim, give feedback or lodge a complaint, WhatsApp us at 9999499044 ​or email us at ​checkthis@newschecker.in​. You can also visit the Contact Us​ page and fill the form.

Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

Vasudha Beri
Vasudha Beri
Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular