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Measures Used By Israeli Police To Disperse Demonstrations

Police brutality Israel Protest
Photograph by Amos Gil, Shatil Stock

How To Deal With Measures Used By Israeli Police To Disperse Demonstrations

In light of escalating police brutality in the last weeks, protest groups are distributing these important tips on how to deal with measures used by police to disperse demonstrations and how to provide essential first aid.

Water Cannons Spray Water At High Pressure; The Israel Police Is Deploying Them At Close Range In Violation Of Procedures, Increasing The Risk Of Injury

A water cannon shoots approximately 20 liters per second and holds 10,000 liters of water. The main danger to protestors is falling and sustaining head or eye injuries. If you find yourself in close contact with a water cannon and do not wish to leave the area, sit on the ground and protect your head to prevent head injuries caused by falling. Eye injuries are common with water cannons, so avoid looking straight at the cannon. There is a higher risk for people who wear eyeglasses because the lenses can implode.

Tear Gas And Pepper Spray - Chemical Stimulants That Cause Pain And Infection

Blue water is used to mark “problematic” demonstrators and tell police officers who to arrest following the water shooting. If you are shot with colored water you are marked for arrest.

“Skunk” Water is a mixture of chemicals designed to stink and cause deterrence. Exposure can lead to ongoing nausea and difficulty breathing due to exposure to these chemicals.


When tear gas comes into contact with water, sweat or oil on the skin, it dissolves and turns into a painful acidic liquid. The gas may even cause a chemical reaction in the metabolic system, disable the action of enzymes and cause tissue damage.

What To Do If You Are Hit By Tear Gas Or Pepper Spray

Eyes - tears, pains, redness, eyelid spasms, temporary blurred vision. Wash with a large amount of water. Immediately remove contact lenses. Seek medical treatment if symptoms continue for over an hour, if vision is blurred for a long time, or if there is a sensation of a foreign object in the eye.

Skin - Burning sensation, pain, temporary redness. Wash with a large amount of water and, if possible, use soap, especially after exposure to pepper spray or unknown irritants. Remove all clothing that has been sprayed.

Seek medical treatment in case of blisters or burns, constant itching, prolonged redness for over an hour or a burning sensation. Avoid using creams, ointments or oils.

Breathing Issues – If you feel a temporary feeling of suffocation or difficulty breathing:

Get out of the area immediately and find cool, fresh air in a well-ventilated area. Breathe as calmly as possible. Seek medical treatment in case of prolonged symptoms or rapid breathing over time.

Stun Grenades - Weapons That Cause A Loud Explosive Noise And/Or A Blinding Flash Of Light, Causing Panic, Disorientation And Injuries

What to do if you are injured by the shock wave or grenade fragments from a stun grenade:

In case of minor burns: aloe vera gel or antibiotic ointment may help, and ice or cold compresses can relieve the pain.

Seek medical care in case of: injury to the head, face or other delicate body parts such as the hands and neck; deeper burns, blisters or wounds; a feeling of pain that is different from a feeling of a temporary bruise; prolonged hearing or vision problems.

In case of ear pain, leave the area immediately and look for a quiet place. Seek medical attention in cases of: constant ringing in the ears, deafness, severe earache, or any bleeding from the ears, severe headache or other unexpected symptoms.

“The Scream” is an acoustic weapon, also known as a sound cannon

It is used to disperse demonstrations by playing loud and painful noise, which can cause significant damage to the ears and even lead to hearing loss. It is important to equip yourself with quality earplugs before coming to demonstrations.

Arrests Are Becoming More And More Common – How To Be Prepared

  • Do not walk around alone so that others will know if you are arrested, and make sure that enough activists around you know your full name and ID number

  • Do not resist arrest in a violent manner, since resistance can lead to criminal charges for attacking an officer, and this is to be avoided

  • Do not speak to police officers without the presence of an attorney; the detainee support unit makes sure that each detainee receives an attorney; we are not alone!

  • Document every arrest or attempted arrest, particularly the names of the arresting police officers


Please consider donating to support protest detainees. Detainee support pays legal fees to lawyers who are on-call 24/7 and who travel to the sites of the incidents and accompany detained protestors while in detention hearings before a judge and through criminal proceedings in court.



April 28, 2024

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