Officer accused of protester attack given IDF ban

An Israeli officer who struck a pro-Palestinian protester in an allegedly unprovoked incident has been given a two-year ban from command positions.

Lt. Col. Shalom Eisner was told today that he has been removed from his post as deputy commander of the Jordan Valley Brigade and that he will be prevented from taking up command roles for the next two years, including as the Deputy Commander of the IDF Officer School – a role he was due to take on.

The IDF spokesman said the decision was taken on "moral grounds" and that there had been "professional and command failure".

Lt-Col Eisner's actions, which were caught on film and then posted online, have drawn condemnations from the Israeli Prime Minister, the Israeli president and other senior political figures.

Although the Danish activist has said the anti-Israel protest he was at in the West Bank was completely non-violent, Lt. Col. Eisner has claimed the victim provoked him by breaking two of his fingers.

The military has launched an investigation into what happened, and Lt. Col. Eisner has not yet been sacked from the army.

Last updated: 12:08pm, April 18 2012