JERUSALEM (VINnews) — Police in Israel have been vigorously enforcing health regulations over the past three months in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. In recent weeks, with the dramatic increase in infections, police have issued hundreds of fines daily to people not wearing masks in public. Chareidi sources have claimed that police practice selective enforcement by focusing more attention on Chareidi neighborhoods than others. In one incident in Modiin Illit, a woman was issued a fine as she left the front seat of her car to take care of her screaming baby at the back. Police later apologized for issuing this particular fine.
However despite this incident, police continue daily to harass the Chareidi public. On Monday, two policemen detained an 11-year-old Chareidi girl in a Jerusalem neighborhood and wanted to fine her for not wearing her mask. The girl, who was walking her younger siblings and had taken her mask off to drink an ice, started crying but police continued to demand her name and details until passersby intervened and mentioned that one of the policemen was not wearing his nametag and thus was not authorized to issue fines.
The incident caused an outcry as social media showed the tearful young girl standing with the two policemen. Chareidi MKs called on the police commissioner to visit the girl’s parents and apologize for their actions. Israeli police claimed in response that the girl was 13 years old and that they never intended to fine her and just told her to wear her mask. However other witnesses have testified that she studies in a grade with 11-year-old girls and that police tried to write down her details.
במשטרת ירושלים איבדו את זה לחלוטין. מעכבים ילדה בת 11 שהסתובבה ללא מסכה. הילדה מבוהלת לגמרי. מה הבעיה למסור לילדה מסכה ולאחל לה יום טוב? pic.twitter.com/7woVCksyIG— Liran Tamari (@liran__tamari) July 6, 2020
Even Arab MK Ahmed Tibi pondered whether the police would have acted the same way to a young secular girl in Tel Aviv, adding that ” it is shameful to see how low the police have descended.”